Savory like chili, but not as spicy, this soup is both comfort food and health food all in one delightful bowl. Lentils’ health benefits include fiber, of course, but they contribute significant amounts of folate, iron and magnesium, too.
What I like best about lentils? They are super easy to prepare. No long pre-soaks like other beans.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- 1 (32 ounce) carton chicken broth
- 1 cup red lentils
- 1 large carrot, diced
- juice of half a lemon
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- sour cream for garnish
1. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Stir in the onion and garlic, and cook until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, cumin, kosher salt, black pepper, and chili powder. Cook and stir 2 minutes more until the spices are fragrant.
2. Stir in the chicken broth, lentils, and carrot. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the lentils are soft, about 30 minutes.
3. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup in the cooking pot, or use a conventional blender, pureeing the soup in small batches and returning to the pot. If desired, do not puree all of the soup. This will leave it a little chunky. I prefer it pretty smooth.
4. Stir in the lemon juice and cilantro, then season to taste with salt. Drizzle with additional olive oil and a dollop of sour cream to serve.