Resolutions, Cold Snaps & New Pots

January 2, 2008


This lentil-tomato soup recipe might have been a more apt January 1 recipe (a little more resolution-worthy than sticky buns, right?). But, as far as I was concerned, it was still the holiday yesterday and holidays deserve special foods, not salads (indeed, Salad Wednesday is making a repeat appearance tonight, as promised) and gyms (mine was so packed this morning I had to fight for machines and bob-and-weave my way to my locker).


But now the holidays are officially over. Sniff. And, mother nature seems to have neatly replaced the holiday season with a wicked cold snap here in Chicago. The thermometer isn’t climbing above the single digits and it actually hurts to breathe outside. Clearly, this situation calls for soup. And this soup, despite its rich smoky flavor and velvety luxe texture, won’t derail even the most rigorous health-related resolutions.


And, for me, this soup gave me another excuse to use my favorite kitchen-related Christmas present: the gorgeous Le Creuset dutch oven pictured above. In the week since Christmas, I’ve used it four times. That’s right, four times. I haven’t even found a home for it in our cupboards yet, because it’s been so frequently in use. And it’s just so pretty that it might take up permanent residence on the stove.


So whether you’ve got a resolution to uphold, a cold snap to weather or a new pot to break in, this is the recipe for you.


Lentil-Tomato Soup
Cooking Light

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 1/3 cups water
2 1/3 cups dried lentils
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 (14 1/2-ounce) cans fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
Chopped fresh tomatoes (optional)*
Cilantro sprig (optional)*

Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onion; sauté for 3 minutes or until tender. Add the turmeric and the next 6 ingredients (turmeric through garlic); sauté for 1 minute. Add water and next 4 ingredients (water through diced tomatoes); bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 1 hour.

Reserve 2 cups lentil mixture. Place half of remaining mixture in blender; process until smooth. Pour pureed soup into a large bowl. Repeat procedure with other half of remaining mixture. Stir in reserved 2 cups lentil mixture. Garnish with chopped tomatoes and a cilantro sprig, if desired.

* In addition to chopped cherry tomatoes and cilantro, I also like to top this soup with a dallop of Fage Greek yogurt.

14 Responses to “Resolutions, Cold Snaps & New Pots”

  1. This really is one of my favorite soups and I have be meaning to make it for a while. Thanks for the reminder!

  2. ourkitchensink Says:

    Gretchen: Thanks for your comment! I love “re-discovering” a recipe stuffed in the back of my file. Enjoy this one.

  3. Cedar Says:

    That looks really delicious! Did you use green lentils?

  4. ourkitchensink Says:

    Thanks, Cedar! I didn’t use green lentils — just regular, old brown ones. I’ve tried both kinds of lentils in this and my other lentil soup recipe (Ina Garten’s, which calls for green lentils, unlike this one) and I actually prefer the brown. I think they break down a little better and that’s the consistency I like.

  5. Terry B Says:

    Lentils really are versatile and wonderful, aren’t they? This soup looks like a very flavorful use of them. And even though we’re supposed to get a heatwave here in Chicago [near 50ºF by Sunday—woohoo!], January’s always a great time for soup. Beautiful photos, by the way.

  6. ourkitchensink Says:

    Terry B: Thanks for your comment! While this “heatwave” probably won’t have me heading to North Avenue Beach, I will jump at the chance (no matter how fleeting) to break out of my hibernation.

  7. Hillary Says:

    That soup looks so hearty and delicious! Nice work! Love your blog too by the way.

  8. ourkitchensink Says:

    Hillary: Thank you! I’m going to check out your blog now.

  9. JEP Says:

    A lentil soup is just the warm-up I need on this cold winter day!

  10. ourkitchensink Says:

    JEP: I hear you! But, alas, pizza will have to do tonight. (I know, poor me!) Resolutions be damned, we are heading out soon for one of our favorite pizzas in the city.

  11. […] Lentil Tomato Soup (tags: recipe lentils tomatoes spicy cilantro soup) […]

  12. Todd Says:

    Tasty and healthy! Thanks for sharing, although I replaced the ground red pepper with smoked paprika and used the fire roasted diced tomatoes over the plain diced. It still turned out delicious.

  13. ourkitchensink Says:

    Todd: I’m glad you liked it! I have used fire roasted tomatoes in this as well, but my store was out of them last week. And I think smoked paprika would be delicious–I’ll be sure to give that a try.

  14. Elysse Says:

    Awesome. Exactly what I was looking for!

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