Saturday, November 12, 2011

Lentil Soup with Turmeric Yogurt

I love soups in the fall and winter.  Who doesn't?  My soups need to have a lot of flavor and maybe something unexpected.  The something unexpected in this soup is the subtle kick from the spicy smoked paprika and the turmeric yogurt that melts in and around the lentils and clings to the kale.  It is warming and hearty and delicious!

This soup was adapted from Heidi Swanson's Lively Up Yourself Lentil Soup.

Serves 6 to 8

2 cups green French lentils picked over and rinsed
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
6 cups of water
1 bunch of kale, deveined and chopped
1 heaping tablespoon spicy smoked paprika
coarse grained seasalt
black pepper

Greek yogurt

Boil 6 cups of water in a big stock pot.
Put the lentils into a bowl and rinse with cold water - pick out any stones you may come across.  Dump your rinsed lentils into the boiling water and let them cook for about 20 minutes.

While the lentils are cooking chop the onion and mince the garlic.  You might want to crank the tunes and dance around the kitchen while the lentils are cooking, just a suggestion.  I was rocking out to some Bonnie Raitt.  Probably best not to do too much dancing while holding the knife...

Drain the lentils and let them hang out in the colander.  In the stock pit that you were using before heat up the olive oil and saute the onions, don't forget to add some salt.  When the onions are starting to brown toss in the garlic and give everything a good stir.  Add the can of tomatoes and put the lentils back into the pot.  Fill the tomato can with water and swirl it around to get the last of the tomato goodness that is stuck to the sides.  Pour this "tomato water" into the soup.  I did this twice, I wanted to get all of the tomato bits out of the can.  Let this all come to a boil before adding the chopped kale.  Once the kale is in give your soup a good sprinkle of salt, pepper and toss in the heaping, and I do mean heaping, tablespoon of SPICY smoked paprika.  Put the lid on and let it simmer away for about 15 minutes.

While it is hanging out on the back of your stove get the yogurt ready.  You will want about two tablespoons for each bowl of soup.  Sprinkle with turmeric and a little salt and stir it together.  Let it hang out for a while, the yogurt will become pale gold.

When you are ready, and your kitchen smells amazing, ladle up your soup and put a nice big spoonful of the turmeric yogurt on top.  Swirl around your spoon, it's ok to play with your food I promise!  Dig in and enjoy.  You will probably want to have a second bowlful.  And who can blame you!

This would be great with warmed pita bread or garlic naan, I just didn't have any in the house last night.  And be forewarned this makes a big pot of soup, you will have plenty to share around or eat for leftovers.

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