Monday, March 07, 2011

Curried Red Lentil Soup

It's 10:30 p.m. on a Monday night, John's in the shower, and I should be cleaning the house.

And that, my friends, is the dullest possible sentence I could write to usher in the rebirth of buildabelly. Two years have passed, and a million + three recipes are wasting away to nothing in the attic.
The time of liberation has come!

Alright. That's all the pomp and circumstance I can muster at this hour. Onward!

I'll start with the most recent new recipe that I will make until I die. I made it a few nights ago, and it's so good that I had another bowl after I was stuffed to the gills. Gluttony is not something I am proud of nor is it something to which I should admit in this setting, but there you have it. I'm a sucker for Indian food. John loved it, the girls loved it, my sister loved it; what more proof do you need? Just make it already.

It may not be the most lovely picture, but it is a lentil soup, after all. There's only so much one can do.

-2 cups red lentils (I only had one cup of red left and substituted brown for the second cup)
-8 cups vegetable stock (I used water + veg. bouillon paste)
-1 and 1/2 tsp. turmeric
-4 skinny carrots, diced in small pieces

-*I can't remember, but I may have also dumped a package of last summer's frozen parsley into the water while the lentils cooked (@2 tbsp. frozen fresh parsley)

Place the lentils and stock in a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the turmeric, carrots, and parsley, if using. Partially cover the pot and reduce the heat to low. Cook for 45 minutes or until the lentils are soft and tender, stirring occasionally.

-extra virgin olive oil
-1 large onion, chopped
-@ 1 and 1/2 tbsp. fresh ginger, finely chopped or grated
-@ 1 and 1/2 tbsp. fresh garlic, finely chopped
-1 tsp. ground cumin
-2 tsp. ground coriander
-2 tsp. curry powder (I used red curry); if this is your first foray into making your own Indian food, start with less and add to taste.
- ground cayenne, to taste
-1 can diced tomatoes, with juice
-salt, to taste

For the seasoning, heat the oil in a frying pan over medium heat. When hot, add the onion to the pan and cook until the onion is softened and begins to brown. Add the ginger, garlic, cumin, coriander, and curry powder; cook and stir for one minute. Add to the lentils, along with the tomatoes and their juice. Simmer til heated through; add cayenne and salt, to taste, and add more water as needed to reach desired consistency.

*Recipe credit: I adapted this recipe from Lisa at, who herself adapted it from At Home with Madhur Jaffrey. Also, Lisa suggests blending a portion of this soup with an immersion blender before serving. We don't own that gadget, and it was delicious as is.

More to come later this week.
Prepare those bellies, people.


alltheposts said...

I am making this for lunch today!!

Molly said...

Yahoo, Yahoo, Yahoo! Everytime I open up your blog I am gifted with pictures and prose!!!!!! A gift indeed:-) I will admit that I have been hogging time with all of the pics and blogs and I haven't stopped to comment...I will, I promise. By the way, I am enjoying them ALL.

About your culinary talents - I have thought about you and your marvelous recipes/pictures so much especially since our paper gave how-to info on publishing your recipe blog into a cookbook. I'd love to send it to you if you can provide me with an email address or snail mail address. Just today, three people were featured in our paper with their cooking blogs-turned-cookbooks. You should do this! Your recipes not only look good but they taste divine!!! Let me know how I can get this to you. I still have your email address beginning with, Lefty - is it valid? Sorry to take up so much space but I am thrilled to see that you are back on board with full steam ahead!

abigail said...


Good! Since you didn't comment to express your approval or dispproval of the soup, I'm concluding that it must have killed you (obviously).

Yup, that's still my email address. I forgot to thank you for the cool pictures you forwarded a million years ago. What a creative spirit that mother has!
Per recipes:
Since the original scraps of paper I jot notes down on and then stuff in my recipe box are often in too sorry a state to read, I've ended up using this blog as a recipe book now that we have internet again. It might be handy to have it in book form! :)

alltheposts said...

I am alive and well!! I haven't made the soup yet. Good intentions and no follow through. The lentils are still on the counter and my kids are eating them uncooked and calling them peas. I have plans to make it tonight. I already know it will be great, Buildabelly has NEVER let me down!! (no pressure)

Michelle P said...

Wahoo! My belly needs no building for sure (!), but I am SOOO glad you're back at it! And Stretch's belly can always use some building, so he thanks you too! ;)