Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Sweet Potato and Red Lentil Soup

Sweet Potato and Red Lentil Soup

Healthy eating doesn't have to mean boring and tasteless food... not by a long shot!
This soup recipe packs a flavour punch that will land you on your ass. I have really gotten into making soups and experimenting with their flavours. I think that a good homemade soup should be part of everyone's week, it makes a great lunch, it is a great source of getting fresh vegetables into your body, it keeps well for a few days in the fridge and it freezes well. This time of year especially, a good homemade soup with some fresh wholewheat crusty bread is pure comfort food, I love it!
Most soups can be made up in about 20-30 mins... from scratch-to bowl. And trust me when I say, it doesn't take much skill to make it either, when I first got into cooking, soups where at the forefront of my cooking. They give a novice cook a great opportunity to get used to chopping vegetables with the comfort of knowing that, when blended up they wont be seen (well, providing the recipe calls for being blended-but most do). As I am always saying "do the simple things well and you can't go wrong".
This soup has a curried background with the use of 3 spices... Cumin, Coriander and Turmeric. Now this soup will work just fine without using these spices if you either don't have them in your cupboard, or if you don't want a curried flavour... so don't let that put you off trying it. But like everything, if you don't experiment with flavours then you wont realise what you are missing, it took me a whopping 28 years to figure that out! If I could go back and tell my younger self something it would be to be more open to food... and maybe the lotto numbers!!!

Calories 1061
265 per portion
Serves 4:
A teaspoon of cumin seeds
A teaspoon of coriander seeds
A teaspoon of turmeric
Olive oil
1 large onion-chopped
1 eating apple-peeled, cored and sliced
3 cloves of garlic chopped
A thumb-sized piece of ginger grated
600g sweet potatoes
1 litre of stock
100g red split lentils
300ml semi-skimmed mild
The juice of one lime
Creme fráiche to serve

  • Place the 3 spices into a large saucepan over a medium heat to toast them for a few minutes, this enhances the flavours. Then add in the olive oil and stir around as the oil sizzles.
  • To this add in the onion, apple, garlic and ginger and allow to cook whist stirring frequently for about 5 mins.
  • In the meantime peel and cube the sweet potatoes into small cubes. Add these to the saucepan along with the lentils, stock and milk. Turn up the heat and bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 15 mins.
  • Allow to cool slightly then blend with a hand blender or in a jug blender (it is best to do this in a few batches to ensure a smooth consistency and to not overload the blender)
  • Return the soup to a medium heat and stir in the lime juice. Serve with a dollop of creme fráiche.

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