On a crisp night, there’s nothing more satisfying than a hearty bowl of soup like this one, chock-full of bright vegetables and tender lentils. It’s great for when you’re short on time — unlike other dried legumes, lentils don’t need to soak before cooking.
Vegetable & Lentil Soup
2 cups (14 oz./440 g.) brown lentils
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, pressed or minced
4 cups (32 fl. oz./1 l.) low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock
1 can (28 oz./875 g.) low-sodium diced or crushed tomatoes
1 tsp. smoked paprika
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
4 oz. (125 g.) baby spinach
2 Tbs. dry sherry
Pick over lentils for stones or grit. Rinse in a colander under cold running water and drain thoroughly.
Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add carrot and cook until carrot is softened, about 3 minutes longer. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant but not browned, about 30 seconds.
Stir in broth, 2 cups (16 fl. oz./500 ml.) water, lentils, tomatoes with their juices, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer gently until lentils are very tender, about 20 minutes. Chop spinach coarsely and stir into soup. Cook, uncovered, just until spinach is wilted, about 1 minute. Stir in sherry. Ladle soup into bowls and serve hot. Serves 4.
Make fresh, nutritious, home-cooked meals easier than ever with our cookbook Healthy in a Hurry, by Karen Ansel & Charity Ferreira.