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Zesty Lentil-Tomato Soup

Part of winter and nesting season is staying in and enjoying hot dishes to warm yourself up. What if I told you that this dish could be done quickly and the results are incredibly tasty? What if I told you that this could also be a great alternative for a light dinner or a nice appetizer when inviting guests over?

I always felt that lentils and cumin were a match made in heaven, but in this lentil soup version I tried hitting more spots in the tongue by adding some heat with the chilli powder and some zest with the lemon juice. Why not spice up that wonderful combination of flavours?

Easy, quick and delicious! Make it, enjoy it and let me know what you think!

Yield: around 4 servings


3 Tbsp Cooking oil (grape seed, canola, vegetable)

1 each Large onion, diced medium

3 cloves Garlic, minced

1 each Large carrot, peeled & diced (or 2 medium)

1 1/2 Tbsp Tomato paste

1 1/2 tsp Ground cumin

To taste Kosher salt

To taste Fresh ground black pepper

1 large pinch Chilli powder

1 1/2 L Vegetable or chicken stock

1 1/2 cups Red or yellow lentils

1 each Lemon, juiced

For garnish:

As needed Cilantro, chopped (optional)

As needed Good quality extra virgin olive oil for drizzling


  1. In a large pot, heat 3 Tbsp preferred cooking oil. When hot, add onion and sauté until lightly golden, around 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper slightly.

  2. Add carrots and garlic and continue sautéing for another 3 minutes or so, until very fragrant. Stir in tomato paste, chilli powder, cumin and a little more salt and pepper, and sauté for 2 more minutes until well incorporated.

  3. Add stock and lentils and bring to a simmer. Turn down to a low simmer and cover partially and cook until the lentils are cooked through, around 30 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning salt and pepper.

  4. For a chunkier soup leave as-is, if you desire a smoother soup, using a hand blender puree half of the soup. If you are using a regular blender, be careful when pureeing as hot liquids tend to make the lid of blenders open and "explode".

  5. To finish the soup, squeeze the juice of a lemon and garnish with chopped cilantro (optional) to add more flavour dimensions.

  6. Serve immediately and enjoy!!


  • By cutting all ingredients around the same size, you are guaranteeing uniform cooking throughout, make sure to practice your knife skills ;)



Prep, cut and measure ingredients before you start cooking to ease the process.  Organization is key and lists are your friends.



Put a dish towel or a damp paper towel under your cutting board to keep it from slipping and moving around.



Grate garlic and ginger with a microplane instead of mincing them with a knife.



"Clean as you go" so you are not overwhelmed when you are done.  Find those down moments to wash utensils, pots & pans, and wipe counters, so you can enjoy your food and not have to clean all at the end.



Use fresh herbs at the end of the cooking process to add freshness and flavour to the dish, but add dry herbs at the beginning to extract the most flavour possible.



Season in layers...  this means to add a little salt and pepper every time you add a new ingredient to the pot/pan.  This will ensure all your ingredients are well seasoned and you will just have to adjust seasoning at the end.



Recipes are just guidelines.  Feel free replacing ingredients with similar ones you like.  And remember, time and temperatures may vary according to sizes of the food and your appliances.


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