Mrs. Jackson Cooks

Life through food

Hearty and healthy autumnal soup: spiced lentil and chickpea

on November 4, 2011

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I’m sorry. I keep forgetting to take photos. I have been cooking, lots of yummy things in fact. So yummy they’d disappeared down my throat before I had time to even think about a photo! And posts without photos are so dull, that I didn’t want to inflict it on you.

But I made an extra special effort today, and actually took some photos! And I must say, it was worth the wait. This is a truly easy peasy, quick, super delicious and healthy (and low calorie and fat) soup that is pretty much entirely store cupboard food – so you can even make it when you’re skint or super busy and can’t shop. In fact it’s the She-Ra of soups (can you tell I grew up in the ’80s?!). Even if you don’t like lentils, you will like this soup. They’re blended after they’ve been cooked so they make a really hearty thick creamy yummy soup without any lentil worries.

And to demonstrate just how easy this soup was – I made it this morning, before I left for work whilst I was eating breakfast. It took me 2 minutes to boil the kettle, chop and onion and fish the rest of the ingredients out the cupboard, another minute to chuck it all the in the saucepan – which is where it simmered whilst I ate breakfast. When I’d finished breakfast, I blended it in about a minute, chucked in the chickpeas and coriander and ladled some into a container to take to work. See so easy, you can do it half asleep whilst worrying about and doing other things. It added a total of 5 minutes to my morning routine and as I hadn’t washed my hair I could find the 5 minutes quite easily.

The original recipe, was found, as might be predicted – on the BBC good food website, and adapted by me, as predicted! The original is here

I didn’t have red lentils, so I used yellow ones. I don’t think it made a difference. Green ones might be odd in colour but would work just as well. I also added in some cinnamon and turmeric but apart from that I more or less followed the recipe. I also didn’t bother with yoghurt. The soup is thick and creamy enough without it so I thought I’d save the calories (need to fit into that party dress for Christmas!).

Spiced Lentil and Chickpea Soup

Serves 4

  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes (I used 1 tsp, but I’ve reduced it for those that don’t eat chilli as much as we do!)
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
  • 145g lentils (of your choice but don’t bother with puy as you’re blending them)
  • 1 tin tomatoes
  • 850ml vegetable or chicken stock
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 tin chickpeas, drained
  • handful of chopped fresh coriander
  1. Heat a large saucepan on the stove. Add the cumin seeds and chilli flakes until they start to release their smell and pop a bit. Then add the oil and onion and fry until browned.
  2. Add in the ground spices, mixing well and cook for a minute
  3. Add the lentils and mix well then chuck in the tomatoes and stock breaking up the tomatoes with your spoon or spatula. Add seasoning to taste. Bring to the boil then cover and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the lentils are cooked.
  4. Blend the soup in a food processor, blender or use a hand blender. Then add the chickepeas and coriander stir well. If eating straight away you may want to reheat for a minute or two.
  5. Serve with some naan bread and enjoy the hearty healthiness of it all!

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