Spicy Lentil Soup

This soup will take away the chill of fall weather. It's a must have when you have a winter cold. This recipe comes from the cookbook Jump Up and Kiss Me, Spicy Vegetarian Cooking. I've found many great recipes in it. It does contain dairy but most recipes can be made vegan. I did find many of the recipes to be time consuming, but if your use to cooking you'll be able to figure out how to make these dishes more quickly after you make it their way first. Or just wait till I eventually post them.

This recipe is a take off of their Linguine with Spicy Lentil Sauce. I first had it the original way, over Linguine noodles but the whole time I eating it I kept thinking the sauce would be better as soup because it was not a traditional thick sauce that you would expect over pasta. While I’m typing this I’m thinking of how good it would be if they had suggested to blend some of the Spicy Lentil Sauce in a blender. I will have to try that.

To make in into a soup I didn’t really change much just added less lentils and bumped up the Jalapenos. If your using fresh Jalapenos from your garden try just adding half the amount the recipe calls for. I find that my garden fresh ones are way hotter than store bought ones.

2 Tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
1 cup celery, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tsp garlic, grated
1 - 2 Tbsp jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped (adjust to taste)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp red pepper flakes

1 1/4 cups lentils
5 cups water

Heat the olive oil in a large pot. Add the celery, carrots and onions. Sauté over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are soft and beginning to brown about 13 minutes and add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the chilies, salt and pepper flakes. Continue to sauté, allowing the vegetable to brown, about 5 to 10 minutes. While watching them carefully and stirring often so they don’t burn. 

Add the lentils and water and bring to a boil, then put on lowest heat setting, simmer until the lentils are soft but not mushy or falling apart, about 20 to 25 minutes, stir occasionally. Serves 6