Red lentil soup with Indian spices

(Food styling/karoline boehm goodnick; Michele McDonald/Globe Staff)
By Allison Boomer
January 28, 2009

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Serves 8

6tablespoons olive oil
2onions, finely chopped
4cloves garlic, finely chopped
2teaspoon ground cumin
2tablespoons tomato paste
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/4teaspoon chili powder, or more to taste
2quarts chicken stock
3cups water
1pound (2 cups) red lentils, rinsed with cool water and sorted to remove any small stones
2large carrots, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1can (about 14 ounces) diced tomatoes
Juice of 1 lemon
1. In soup pot over medium heat, heat the olive oil. When it is hot, add the onions and cook, stirring often, for 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more.

2. Stir in the cumin and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the tomato paste, salt, pepper, and chili powder. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute more.

3. Add the stock, water, lentils, carrots, and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, partially cover the pan, and turn the heat to medium-low. Simmer the soup for 30 to 40 minutes or until the lentils are soft.

4. Add the lemon juice. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and chili powder, if you like.