Monday, May 16, 2011

Lentil soup

" Don't we all love to settle down on our favorite couch to a hot, comforting bowl of soup? I don't feel any sense of guilt when I tell you folks that I am a soup junkie !!! The only excuse that I've been ever able to give is that they are healthy, nutrient-rich. Lot of veggies and proteins ...blah blah blah. You know how it is ,when it is something you love.

Anyways dals are a very important part of the Indian diet. Not a day goes by without these ubiquitous lentils. They go into sambar, dals, soups, desserts....almost everything. When I first came to US  , I had this three lentil soup at a cafe and it has haunted my palates ever since. I tried replicating it with different types of vegetables and lentils,but hardly ever came close to it. However, in the process this soup has remained a favorite. Plus, when you have something that is healthy,it is certainly a winner. Unfortunately, I don't remember the cookbook it is taken from." 

lentil soup

  • 1 cup French green lentils 
  • 2 tspn garlic paste/minced
  • 2 cups chopped red onion 
  • 2 cups chopped tomato 
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrot 
  • 1/4 cup bell peppers/capsicum 
  • 1/2 cup white wine ( I used vermouth) 
  • 2 tspns balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tspn black pepper 
  • 3 cups vegetable broth 
  • 1 cup water 
  • 1/2 tspn red chilli powder/paprika 
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 tspn oil 
  • Sea Salt (to taste) 
I used French Lentils,also called lentils du puy -but you can substitute masoor dal or a mixture of other lentils for this. French green lentils hold their shape and hence used.

  • Wash the Lentils in running water until it runs clear. Soak it for 15-20 minutes. This makes them softer and reduces the cooking time. 
  • Heat the oil in the pot, add the garlic and the bay leaf, when the garlic paste starts turning golden color, add the onions and the bell pepper and cook till soft. 
  • Add the tomatoes and the carrot and cook until soft. Add the soaked lentils and cook for 3-4 mins. 
  • Add the wine, water and the broth. Season it with salt,pepper. Bring it to a boil. Leave for 2-3 minutes.        
  • Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 25-30 minutes or until the lentils are soft but not breaking apart.
  • Add paprika or more pepper if you need. Mix in the balsamic vinegar.
  • Garnish with cilantro or spring onion. 
Serves 5-6. 

lentil soup


  1. I am not much of a daal fan, but there are says when I just love it... can't do without it :)

  2. Totally understand where u r coming from !!

  3. Lakshmi, your daal looks gorgeous! I love French Lentils, they have a beautiful rustic quality to them :-)

  4. @Sneh | Cook Republic

    Thanks Sneh for stopping by ... I love lentils .. Cant do without them. I recently discovered French lentils and I am glad