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This recipe pre-dates my 5 Ingredients philosophy.
Hearty Red Lentil & Preserved Lemon Soup
Don’t be put off by the preserved lemon. If you haven’t ever tried making it yourself this soup is the perfect excuse. You will have to wait a few weeks before your lemons are ready but trust me, the feeling of satisfaction you’ll have will be well worth it.
If I haven’t convinced you to preserve your own, there is always the commercially produced option – usually available in fancy delis. Or you could always substitute in the zest of three lemons and use a lot of salt to season. It won’t have the same tangy exotic flavour but it will be a lovely lentil soup none the less.
If you must feed a die hard carnivore you could always fry up a sliced chorizo or two in a separate pan and stir through at the end but this soup can stand on it’s own when it comes to heartiness and doesn’t really need any more beefing up.
3T olive oil
3 brown onions
5 cloves garlic,
2T grated ginger
1T cumin seeds, ground
1T fennel seeds
1 cinnamon stick
1t chilli flakes, or to taste
2 carrots, finely diced
3 sticks celery, finely diced
1 desiree potato, scrubbed & finely diced
3 x 400g cans tomatoes
300g red lentils
4 quarters preserved lemon, rind only, finely chopped
natural yoghurt, to serve
coriander leaves, to serve
1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add onion, cover and cook stirring occasionally until the onion is soft. Add garlic, ginger and spices and cook for a couple of minutes. Then pop in the remaining ingredients except the yoghurt and coriander and bring to a simmer.
2. Cook gently, uncovered for about an hour, stirring occasionally and adding more water if it starts to look too dry and thick. When the carrot and potato are tender and the lentils have broken down you’re good to go. Taste and season remembering that there will be a lot of salt from the preserved lemon.
3. If you prefer a smoother soup you could puree it a little with a stick blender but I like to keep it nice and rustic.
4. Serve hot with a dollup of yoghurt and a few sprigs of coriander.