Red Lentil Soup with Brown Rice and Vegetables

30 Jan

I love lentils in general, but red lentils are especially fun because they cook so fast and break down to make a nice, smooth soup.  Red lentils are always a soup ingredient, whereas green or brown lentils retain their shape much better and can be used for other types of dishes, like salads.  I normally use them to make Indian dal, with ginger, turmeric, cilantro, and the other ingredients, but lately I’ve been making red lentil and brown rice based soups.  That combination in and of itself is fabulous, but I’ve also started adding vegetables like potatoes and carrots.  This time I threw in some frozen peas and corn for fun.  I happened to have some cornbread I made a week or so ago still in the freezer (I like to make a pan, cut into pieces, and freeze them to heat individually.  That way I don’t end up eating a whole pan of it, and nothing goes to waste either.)  So, I ate some of this soup just now with some cornbread with pieces of corn, some butter and a drizzle of honey.  Yum!!  Also, a green salad would be an excellent way to round out the meal.  However, I just at a big bowl of soup and a lovely piece of cornbread, and that was really enough.

Ingredients

2 T olive oil or butter

1 onion, chopped

1 large carrot, peeled and chopped

1 stalk celery, ends cut off and sliced

1 medium potato, chopped

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp coriander

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp minced ginger

2/3 cup red lentils

1/2 cup brown rice

Salt (start with 1 tsp, add more if needed)

5-6 cups water or broth

1/2 cup frozen peas

1/2 cup frozen corn

1 cup fresh spinach

Instructions

Heat the butter or oil in a pot.  Add the onion, stir to mix with the butter or oil.  Cook for a few minutes, then add the turmeric, coriander, cumin, and ginger.  Stir to mix and cook for a few more minutes.  Add the carrot, celery, and potato.  Cook all together for about five minutes.  Add the lentils and rice.  Add the water and salt.  Turn on high and bring to a boil.  Once the soup boils, cover the pot and lower the heat to medium low.  Set a timer for 30 minutes.  Five minutes before the timer goes off, add the peas, corn, and spinach.  Cook five more minutes, taste to make sure the rice is cooked and to test the soup, adding additional if needed.

And you’re done!

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