Delicious. Understated. Hearty. Creamy without the addition of any cream whatsoever. These are a few of the words I would use to describe this soup. With subtle flavours of lemon, garlic and just a hint of cloves, this is comfort food in a bowl.
This is my go-to lentil soup recipe because it is a snap to prepare and I love the flavour. I made a big batch last weekend and had it for lunch almost every day last week! The texture is silky and smooth but still pourable – as opposed to thick and pasty. If you prefer the soup to be thicker, you can either add more lentils or reduce the amount of stock called for in the recipe. Red lentils change from a pinkish-salmon colour in the raw state to a soft golden colour when cooked. They cook faster than other types of lentils and puree really well which makes them ideal for this soup.
- 1 large onion
- 1 clove
- 1 lb. red lentils
- 1 bay leaf
- 8 cups vegetable stock, unsalted
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 tsp. fresh thyme, or ½ tsp. dried
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- pinch nutmeg
Rinse the lentils well and place in a large saucepan. Peel the outer skin from the onion and stick one whole clove into the the side of the onion. It doesn’t mater where.
Place in the onion in the saucepan with the lentils and add the stock, bay leaf, thyme one clove of garlic, and half of the salt and pepper. Reserve the remaining garlic and seasonings to balance out the flavours at the end.
Bring the mixture to a boil, skimming as necessary. Reduce the heat and simmer everything for about 30 minutes. Remove the onion and bay leaf. Stir in the remaining minced garlic and simmer another 10 minutes.
Place an immersion blender in the pot and puree the lentils in the stock until the soup is smooth and glossy. Stir in the lemon juice. Adjust to taste alternating between salt and lemon juice until you reach the desired balance. Divide soup between serving bowls, top with a few croutons and serve extra wedges of lemon.
It’s just too easy!