Turkish-style Red Lentil Soup

Soups

This is a very simple soup to make once you have all of the ingredients ready. Purchase a good quality red pepper paste from a Turkish store.
Based on an original recipe kindly sent in by Jack McNulty.

Soups
Easy
1 Hour
Ingredients List for people
Units:
Instructions
  1. Bring the water or vegetable broth to a boil in a large wide pot. Add the rinsed red lentils and skim the scum as it rises to the surface during the first five minutes of cooking.
  2. Reduce the heat to a slow simmer and cook the lentil until they are very soft – about 30 - 45 minutes. Add more water as necessary to prevent scorching and to maintain about 25% moisture content.
  3. Water sauté the onions, carrots and celery and cook until softened – about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the curry powder and cook for one minute.
  5. Add the vegetable mixture to the lentils when they are ready and cook about 10 minutes.
  6. Mix together the tomato paste and red pepper paste.
  7. Dissolve in a few tablespoons of water, then add to the soup. Cook about five minutes.
  8. Puree with a hand blender until desired consistency. Thin with water as necessary.
  9. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
  10. Garnish with soy yogurt and chopped parsley.

This is a very simple soup to make once you have all of the ingredients ready. Purchase a good quality red pepper paste from a Turkish store. Look at the ingredients and make sure it only contains red peppers and some vegetables along with vinegar. It’s best to puree the soup with a hand blender and then strain the soup into a clean pot resulting in a very smooth soup. You can keep it a bit rustic by pureeing and not straining the soup.

You can also add a little bite to the soup by using up to 1/2 spicy red pepper paste of the same brand as the mild paste. You can substitute the red pepper paste by adding a bit more tomato paste and using a spicy paprika to taste.