I’ve never been a soup fan. But some days, especially in the middle of January, that’s all I want: a nice, steaming bowl of soup. While I’d love to indulge in some cheesy creamy soup, I know that my stomach would kill me.
I have learned, in my just over a year of cream-lessness, that there are ways to ‘cheat’. To trick the mouth into thinking it’s eating melted cheese – when really it’s just a thick, rich homemade aioli, or a creamy soup that contains not the slightest trace of cream.
This soup, in all its vegan goodness, is a hearty meal, delicious the next day, and as far as soup is concerned, lightning fast to make. We had to find the red lentils at the international food store – our regular store only carries the brown ones. But the recipe isn’t kidding that red lentils cook much quicker. This soup is done and ready to eat in less than 45 minutes. I’m sure you could substitute other lentils here, but be prepared to be cooking for a good deal of time longer.
Right now, Taylor and I are ‘chilling’ in the cold mountains of Colorado… a mini vacation so to speak, and just writing about this soup is making me hungry. I wonder how Taylor’s meat-loving family would react to the prospect of a lentil soup? You think that would go over well?
Red Lentil Soup
Makes 4-6 servings.
Recipe from Epicurious.
1 large onion, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 Turkish or 1/2 California bay leaf
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 cup red lentils (7 ounces), picked over and rinsed
3 1/2 cups reduced-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
3 cups water
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
Cook onion in oil with 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 minutes.
Add garlic, cumin, bay leaf, and thyme and cook, stirring, 1 minute more. Add lentils, broth, water, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and simmer, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until lentils are very soft and falling apart, about 30 to 45 minutes.
Discard bay leaf and thyme sprig, then purÃ©e 2 cups of mixture in blender (use caution when blending hot liquids) and return to pan.
Stir in parsley and season with salt.