Funny, when I started this post, I thought I would have more to say about the soup.  I’ve been revisiting old favourites lately and at one point in my life I made this soup every other weekend for about 6 months.  Eventually I found something new, but man, this is good soup.  Regardless, the soup has been upstaged by the garnish……..

Sometimes we are at the mercy of the Magic Bullet.  This is one of those times.  I started out with a vision of a dark green cilantro pesto.  At the last-minute, I remembered the avocado sitting in the fruit bowl needing use.  Maybe I should have blended and then mashed.  Regardless, I threw everything into the bullet and spun, shook, and spun some more.  Added water, spun some more. More water, more spinning.  Regretted the appliance choice – so much for quick and easy. I should have used my food processor.

Eventually I ended up with this creamy bright green spread.  I can’t complain. It’s really quite delicious.  The coolness of the avocado tames the heat in the soup.  A perfect substitute for sour cream – which is also good on top of this soup.  But this pretty green goop is vegan and that makes me happy.

lentil soup

The best lentil soup

(I can say that, I’ve made many.  This soup rocks!)

  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 6 cups water, or half water and half vegetable stock
  • 3 cups lentils (brown or yellow)
  • 1 28oz can of diced tomatoes

Sauté onions in a large soup pot over medium heat until fragrant and tender, 3 to 5 minutes.  Add spices, salt, pepper and garlic and sauté for an additional minute or two, stirring constantly.  Add water, lentils and diced tomatoes.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer about 1 hour or until the lentils are soft and tender.

If using brown lentils the soup benefits from a quick run of the emersion blender… or you can puree about half of it, in batches, in a standard blender and return to the pot.  If using yellow or red lentils (the split lentils) they melt into nothingness anyway, and blending is not really necessary.

Optional garnishes:

  • Avocado cream… keep reading
  • Sour cream
  • fresh cilantro and fresh tomatoes diced

Avocado Cream

  • 1 Hass avocado
  • 1 bunch cilantro – about 1/4 cup packed. leaves and soft steams
  • generous pinch, salt – or to taste
  • juice of half a lime
  • 4 walnut halves
  • water, about quarter of a cup, 1 tablespoon at a time

Add all ingredients to a blender or food process, except the water. Add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached.