15 Jan. 2011 Vadouvan-spiced Red Lentil Soup

Adapted from Solan, M and (recipes by) Mary Margaret Chappell. “Feel good foods.” Vegetarian Times: January/February 2011. Issue 382, Vol. 37, No. 2. p. 88.

My Comments: Adrien and I love soup! We try to plan a soup meal at least once a week — and this one looked really

Vadouvan spiced Red Lentil Soup
Copyright © 2011. Adrien Bisson.

flavorful.  I did not buy the Vadouvan spice (a French-Indian spice blend) as I already own a very large (and quickly expiring) jar of Garam Masala.  Hopefully I can find the Vadouvan in the bulk spice aisle of Whole Foods because it sounds intriguing! To clean the leeks easily, take a page out of Jacques Pepin’s techniques: cut up the leeks, drop them in a bowl of water and wait for the grit to float out of the leeks to the bottom of the bowl. Scoop the leeks out of the water carefully and the grit should all be gone.

If you enjoy Vegetarian cooking, Vegetarian Times is an excellent source of really great, well-put together recipes.  More about Feel Good Foods on their website at http://www.vegetariantimes.com/features/1002.


1 TBSP olive oil
1 large leek (use both the white and pale green parts, quartered and chopped)
2 cloves a garlic, minced
1 tsp vadouvan spice powder (I used Garam Masala)
1 15-0z. can chopped tomatoes
1/2 cup red lentils
1/4 cup quinoa (or substitute more lentils here)
2 springs of thyme  (It was the middle of winter in New England so I used about 1 tsp dry)
1 bay leaf
1 TBSP lemon juice
OPTIONAL: Fresh parsley for garnish


1. Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the leek and saute for 2 to 3 minutes until soft.

2. Stir in garlic and spice power (Garam Masala). Next add tomatoes, lentils, quinoa, thyme, bay leaf and 6 cups of water. Season with salt and pepper (if you wish), cover and bring the soup to a boil.

3. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the lentils become soft.

4. Stir in the lemon juice and parsley just before serving.

Serves 4.

Weight Water Points = 5.


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