Cooking on a budget: Curried Lentil soup

Lentil soup with chives and labneh

Lentils are another great ingredient for low cost cooking and meal prep. I love them in soups as they blend and thicken very nicely. In addition, they taste sort of basic and neutral so they pair well with many other ingredients. Start this recipe by preheating the oven to 400F. You’ll also need a large sauce pot as you’ll be blending the soup later with an immersion blender.

Ingredients for this recipe are as follows:

  • 1 butternut squash, cut in half
  • 1/2 red onion, medium dice
  • 1 white onion, medium dice
  • 1 apple, medium dice
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 white button mushrooms
  • 3 jalapeños
  • 2 medium sized carrots
  • olive oil, salt and pepper
  • 2 tbl high quality curry powder
  • 1 cup cooked shredded chicken,
  • 2 russet potatoes, cooked, peeled, diced
  • 1 cups lentils, cooked
  • 2 quarts chicken stock, low sodium (if vegetarian, use vegetable stock)
  • small bunch of chives, for garnish
  • labneh, for garnish

Begin by roasting your butternut squash, mushrooms, red onions, and jalapeños. Lightly coat in olive oil and roast until tender. Scoop the seeds out of the squash and discard. Remove the seeds and pith from the jalapeños. You can leave some if you like a little more heat in the finished product. Set aside.

In the sauce pot, add olive oil, and white onion, apple, carrots, and some salt. Sweat over medium heat for about 8-10 minutes, then add garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.

Set aside some of the cooked vegetables in a small bowl, for later. Add 1 cup of the lentils to the pot, and then add the curry powder and toast the veggies and lentils to open up the oils in the spice.

Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Add half of the cooked potatoes to help thicken the soup. Turn off the heat and plug in your immersion blender if you’ve got one and begin pureeing the soup. If you’ve only got a stand up blender, blend the soup in batches.

Once the soup is pureed, taste for seasoning and add accordingly. Next, mix in the veggies you cooked earlier, the shredded chicken, and the diced potatoes. Ladle the soup into a bowl or your meal prep containers, and then garnish with snipped chives, and a dollop of labneh.

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