Mountain Lentil Soup
The last couple of weeks the weather was such that you didn’t have any doubt left that autumn had arrived. The cravings for comfort food and being snuggled up on the couch with a hot drink had arrived at the same time.
Wouldn’t you know it, though, that the day I make this soup turns out to be the warmest for weeks, allowing for a nap in the deck chair on the balcony, barefoot and a t-shirt, no cardigan required.
Not that I’m complaining! I enjoy every ray of sunshine we can get, especially if it makes taking food pics in natural light possible.
The idea for this soup came – as usual – out of nowhere. It was inspired by the weather and thinking about comfort food, and it started out with soup – lentils – chorizo. Everything else was just fine tuning. If I could get fresh coriander I might use that, then use up the chillies I’d grown on my balcony this summer. The cumin and the potatoes came as an afterthought while I was cooking.
The reason I used mountain lentils – they’re a little larger than red lentils – was because I had half a jar left that’s been sitting in my store cupboard for a while, and I wanted something different from the brown lentils I usually use.
I liked my idea of this soup but I have to admit I had no idea how it really would turn out. Turns out it turned out very good! Subtle hint of both the chillies and the cumin, and the consistency – also something I made up as I went along – was how I liked it, too. I decided to add a little roux in the end but not a lot so it wouldn’t become too thick and turn into a lentil stew.
To serve, I added some pul biber – a Turkish powder of dried peppers – as well as some sour cream. I didn’t want to overdo it with the chillies but I like hot dishes, so I sprinkled a little pul biber on top. The sour cream was just for pure indulgence.
I could imagine making this as a starter for guests, so watch out, future dinner guests!
Note: The chorizo I used was not the thick type but a thinner version; over here it comes in a pack of three.
Mountain Lentil Soup
3 thin chorizo sausages
2 tsp cumin powder
2 small red chillies
2 cups mountain lentils
handful of chopped coriander
Cut chorizo sausages into slices, cutting at an angle that gets them a little elongated. Fry in a non-stick pot (without oil) for about 5 minutes so the fat comes out of the sausage. In the meantime, finely slice the onion and cut the chillies into fine slices. Peel the potatoes and cut into bite-sized pieces.
Remove chorizo slices from pot with a slotted spoon and set aside. Fry the onions and the chillies in the chorizo fat, then add the cumin powder.
Add the lentils along with 2 cups of water and 2 tsp of salt and bring to a boil. After 10 minutes cooking time, add the potatoes.
Add more water as needed; by the time the lentils are done there should be about 1 – 2 cm of soup on top of the lentils [altogether I added about 6 cups during the cooking process]. Cooking time should be around 30 – 40 minutes.
Serve with rustic bread or Arabic flatbread and coriander, pul biber and sour cream on the side.
22 October 2014
Thank you very much to Krista, editor at WordPress, for liking this soup & FRESHLY PRESSing it!