This carrot and lentil soup is filled with carrots, lentils, ginger, coriander, cumin, and cilantro. As flavorful as it is healthy. Plus it’s vegetarian, too.
A delicious vibrant soup that is sweet but also savory. The lentils give the soup body, protein and fibre, as well as many minerals. Carrots are a fantastic vegetable and are great for warming up kapha and vata, only warming up pitta slightly so pitta can enjoy this as well, especially when eaten in the cooler months. This is typical of an Ayurvedic soup as it is light, nourishing and unfussy – the simpler the food, the easier it is to digest. Eat as a starter or stir in some cooked rice for a more substantial meal.–Anjum Anand
WHAT IS AYURVEDA? (AND HOW THE HECK DO I PRONOUNCE IT?!)
Okay. Here’s our terribly oversimplified attempt at explaining Ayurveda (pronounced aa-yur-VAY-dah). It’s an ancient medical tradition in Indian culture, and it’s founded on the principle that there are three basic body types, or, if you will, doshas: vata, pitta, and kapha. Certain dietary and lifestyle choices, based on your dosha, can bring you into balance or bump you further out of balance. Scoff if you will, but it’s been around a heck of a lot longer than any of us—five millennia at last count. Book after book has been written on the topic, and a simple Google search will turn up countless little quizzes you can take to find out your body type and how to take what Ayurvedic practitioners refer to as “intelligent action” in your life. Don’t know about you, but we could sure use some more intelligence in our lives. Why wait any longer?
Carrot and Lentil Soup
- 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 teaspoons ghee or vegetable oil
- 1/2 medium onion chopped
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger depending on how zingy you like things
- 2 small garlic cloves chpped
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper
- 11 ounces carrots that’s 3 to 5 smallish or slender carrots, peeled and thickly sliced
- 2 tablespoons red lentils washed
- 2 3/4 cups vegetable broth, homemade chicken stock, canned chicken broth or 1/2 teaspoon vegetable bouillon stock powder dissolved in 2 3/4 cups water
- Handful cilantro leaves finely chopped
- Heat the ghee or oil in a small nonstick saucepan. Add the onion and cook gently until golden, then add the ginger and garlic and stir for 40 to 60 seconds. Add the coriander, cumin, and salt and pepper and stir for 20 seconds. Add the carrots, lentils, and stock and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Reheat over low heat, taste, and adjust the seasoning accordingly. Serve topped with cilantro.
Recipe Testers' Reviews
Delicious soup. Just delicious. Trust me, make this soup if you need something warm and comforting or restorative or just because you want something rich and creamy without being heavy.
I’m thrilled this recipe serves 2, but if necessary, it could be stretched to four as a starter. I served it swirled with a bit of sour cream for some tang and to add some additional richness.
I must admit that when I first read this recipe, I wasn’t expecting much. Yet as soon as I served it, everyone’s reaction was incredible. The taste was smooth, a tad spicy, filled with flavors (including a touch of Indian), and powerful.
I was worried my toddler would think it was too spicy, so I decided to add a little heavy cream to soften the taste. It worked beautifully, as she loved it, and I must admit, I liked it, too. I used 2 tablespoons vegetable oil and 3 small carrots. I didn’t have vegetable stock, so I used mild chicken stock. This is a recipe to make again and often.
Originally published October 17, 2011