This year, I resolved to cook more meatless meals. One of the biggest hurdles to this has been my lifelong aversion to beans and lentils. But as a recovering picky eater, I’m trying very hard to grow up and get over it. In my quest to like lentils, I’ve tried lentil casserole, lentil tacos, and a version of lentil sloppy joes that a friend promised I would like (alas, I didn’t). Then I remembered a lentil soup I’d had years ago at a friend’s house and asked for the recipe. At last! A lentil recipe I really, truly love. It’s also inexpensive, uses staples I can keep in my pantry, and requires only about ten minutes of hands-on prep. Make a batch of this soup and a loaf of bread and you’ve got two easy, hearty (and healthy) meals–perfect for cold weather.
Turkish Red Lentil Soup
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 onions finely chopped I puree them in a mini food-chopper until they're smooth
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 cup red lentils rinsed
- 1/2 cup bulgur rinsed
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 8 cups vegetable stock
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 lemon
- Saute onions in olive oil.
- Add paprika, lentils, bulgur, and tomato paste.
- Add stock and cayenne pepper and cook about an hour, stirring occasionally.
- Squeeze a lemon wedge into each bowl before serving.