This recipe was one of the first things I learned how to make, that was not made semi-finished or store-bought. We’ve all been young… Now that doesn’t take away anything from this red lentil soup. It is more than a staple in our household and we eat it at least once a week.
I believe it is the overall simplicity of the dish that makes it so perfect! As an added benefit you can add more vegetables to your liking making it personal for you and your loved ones. It is that versatile.
Carrots and oregano are my favourites in this one, but I have added red peppers, coconut milk, pumpkin and more with good results all around.
Did I mention this red lentil soup is very child-friendly? My son likes it a lot and the hearty soft, almost sweet texture of the lentils doesn’t scare away. A good way to get your child to eat some legumes (if you are struggling with that).
Me living in both India and Bangladesh made me learn to really appreciate lentils. Over there they eat it almost daily and of all different colours. They call it dhaal (which also is the name of a Bollywood movie), and it is usually consumed with some bread or rice. In India and Bangladesh, the spices used are mostly cumin, cinnamon and chilli, but I’ve chosen to use oregano (and a splash of chilli on top, because I like spicy food).
How to make red lentil soup
The process of cooking this red lentil soup is pretty straightforward. Gather your ingredients and start out by dicing the onion and garlic and grate the carrot.
Next up, bring out one of your bigger pots and heat up some olive oil.
Add the onion and garlic and cook while turning until the onion is translucent and the garlic is starting to get a nice colour. Continue to stir while adding the grated carrot and fry for another minute or two. Then add all the red lentils and really turn around to mix the lentils with the oil, onion, garlic and carrot. It’s important to stir here because the lentils have a tendency to stick in the bottom before you add the liquids. Lastly, add the crushed tomatoes, give it a good stir, then add water, veggie cube stocks, oregano, salt and pepper.
Bring the soup to a boil and then reduce the heat, cover the pot and let simmer for about 30 minutes, until the lentils are all cooked through and have swollen up by absorbing the liquids. At this point, you can choose the consistency of your soup, if you want it thicker just remove the lid and let the soup reduce over low heat.
Sprinkle some fresh herbs on top of each plate, together with some chilli flakes (if you’re serving to children you should probably skip the chilli), and serve with some bread.
A hearty, comforting red lentil soup that has its beauty in the overall simplicity of the dish.
- 5 dl (2 cups) red lentils
- 500 g crushed tomatoes
- 1 1/4 L (5 cups) water
- 1 carrot large
- 1 onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2 veggie stock cubes
- 2 tbsp oregano dried
- 2 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
Dice the onion and garlic into really small bits.
Grate the carrot.
Heat up the olive oil in a large pot and add the onion and garlic. Fry until the onion is translucent.
Add the grated carrot and fry for another minute.
Add the red lentils and combine everything thoroughly.
Add the crushed tomatoes, water, veggie stock cubes, oregano and some salt and pepper. Bring the soup to a boil, lower the heat and let the soup simmer for about 30 minutes.
Sprinkle the soup with some fresh herbs and chilli flakes and serve with some bread.
Tip! If you want a thicker soup, remove the lid and let the soup reduce while it simmers.