My favourite soup used to be carrot and coriander. That was until I was knocked down with Swine Flu in 2009 and I had an unpleasant experience with Lloyd Grossman’s packeted version. I’ve never been able to eat carrot & coriander since! For info, nothing actually bad happened, I was just super ill and ever since associated the taste of the soup with the wretched illness.
You would think we were rabbit owners from the abundance if carrots we also have at home. They are super cheap and full of vitamins C & K plus beta carotene (great for seeing in the dark, allegedly!) so when I ended up with a huge bunch of coriander and lots of carrots to be used up, I contemplated giving C&C a go again. But then my stomach turned from the memories of Lloydy G’s…. So I decided to bring in my favourite pulse, the hearty lentil, to save the day and mix things up a bit.
In this recipe I’ve used coriander stalks, as well as leaves, as they have a slightly different, more earthy, flavour to the leaves and it’s a great way to use up the stalks.
I had some leftover coconut milk (tinned not the drinking stuff) so decided I’d give this recipe a bit of an Asian twist. You could omit the coconut milk or spices to have a more traditional recipe, or change things up to suit your taste.
Spicy carrot and lentil soup
- 1 tbsp butter or alternative (I use a soya spread)
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 5 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 1 cup of red lentils
- 2 pints of vegetable stock
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp chilli flakes or powder
- 2 tbsp coriander stalks
- 2 tbsp coriander leaves
- 1 cup of coconut milk (tinned)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Melt the butter/spread in a pan over a medium heat then add the onion and cook until soft. Add the garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes. If the pan or onions start to brown, add 1 tbsp of water.
Add the carrots, lentils, ground coriander, ginger and chilli and mix until all the ingredients are coated. Add the stock and bring to the boil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Simmer for 10 minutes then add the coriander stalks. Simmer for another 10 minutes and add the coriander leaves and coconut milk.
The lentils and carrots should now be soft. Once they are, blend to a smooth soup. I like to leave some chunks in it. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
Curl up, put on Netflix (I’m currently ploughing through Homeland ahead of the next season coming out) and enjoy!