Chickpea and Lentil Soup
Total approximate time from start to finish: 40-45 minutes
The weather has been bitter cold this week, but it is the perfect time for a hot bowl of soup! I found this recipe in my food and wine soups and salad cookbook and I just love it. I was very skeptical at first because the ingredients were a bit… odd. But it is absolutely delicious and tastes even better the next day. It is a vegetarian soup but it is so hearty and filling that even my carnivorous husband devoured it. It is quite simple to make. When I have a crazy day I like to make it the night before, let it cool and put it in the fridge. It takes about 5 minutes to warm it up on the stove the next day. The flavors are even more amazing after they have had a chance to meld together overnight. My favorite thing about this recipe – all of the ingredients are fairly inexpensive! Even if you are not a seasoned cook, I would definitely recommend giving this unique recipe a try.
Here is what you will need:
2 tablespoons of butter
1 onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon turmeric
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 ¾ teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper
1 cup lentils (any variety is fine)
6 ½ cups water
1 ¾ cups crushed tomatoes in thick puree (15 oz can)
1 2/3 cups drained and rinsed chickpeas (15 oz can)
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
Lemon wedges for serving
In a large pot, melt the butter over medium low heat. Add the onion and celery and cook for about 10 minutes until the vegetables are nice and soft. Stir in the ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, salt, pepper and lentils. It will release a huge fragrance of spices but stir it all together so that everything gets coated nicely.
Then add the water and tomatoes and bring it to a boil. Partially cover it and reduce the heat. Let it simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring about every 10 minutes. Make sure the lentils are tender (if they’re not, cook it an additional 10 minutes) and then add the chickpeas. Simmer for about 5 minutes more, stir in the cilantro and it’s ready to serve.
I like to serve mine with a lemon wedge and a little bit of chopped cilantro on top. The chopped cilantro is mostly for presentation but the squeeze of lemon juice really brings out all of the amazing and different flavors in this recipe.