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Red Lentil Soup

This is a classic Turkish soup, also called mercemek corba. A perfect soup to be eaten at any time of the year, fresh and warming at the same time and packed with nutrient rich lentils. So simple to make and requires no blending.

Serves 4

Olive oil

1 onion, sliced

2 carrots, peeled and chopped

4 garlic cloves, minced

2 tsp cumin

1 tsp paprika

½ tsp turmeric

1 tbsp tomato puree

1 cup / 250g red lentils, rinsed

½ cup / 120g rice

4 cups / 500ml veg stock

3 cups / 375ml water

1 lemon, juiced

Salt, pepper

Optional to serve:

Parsley leaves

Chilli flakes

1. Heat a deep saucepan over a medium heat with the olive oil. Add the onions, carrots and a pinch of salt. Cook for 5 minutes, until starting to soften and caramelise. Add the garlic, spices and tomato puree and cook for 2 minutes.

2. Add the lentils and rice, then pour over the veg stock and water. Bring to a simmer for 20 minutes until the lentils are soft and cooked through.

3. Top up with extra water if it seems a little thick. Add the lemon juice and taste to season with salt and pepper. The soup is ready to enjoy but if you prefer a smoother consistency, blend half or all of it until smooth and creamy.

4. Add chilli and parsley leaves as an optional extra.

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