Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Spicy Red Lentil Chili

I'm not going to be the one to say that you ate too many sweets this past month. I won't tell that I saw you sneak that extra helping of dessert, and I'm certainly not about to hint that it's time to start eating some healthy food now and then. I'm not going to suggest that you make one of those New Year's resolutions that you're probably not going to follow through with anyway. And I'm most definitely not going to try to persuade you to make this soup just because it's tasty, healthy, and, um, shall we say,  cleansing.

Instead, I'm going to show you this soup and tell you that if you make it, you'll feel good about yourself, inside and out. And what better way to bring in the new year than by feeling whole and renewed?

Welcome, 2012!

Spicy Red Lentil Chili
Recipe adapted from
Picture by Kelly

1 cup red lentils
4 cups water, divided
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1/4 cup (1-2 stalks) celery, sliced into 1/4 inch pieces
2 medium carrots, peeled cut into 1/4 inch pieces
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon ginger (1 inch piece), peeled and finely chopped
1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
2 cups vegetable (or chicken) stock
1/8 teaspoon turmeric
1/8 teaspoon cumin
1/8 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black powder
2 tablespoons cornstarch + 2 tablespoons water
1 cup shredded chicken (optional)
  1. Bring lentils and 2 cups water to boil on high; turn off heat. Remove half the lentils and liquid (or more if you prefer a thicker texture); place in blender and puree, about 1 min.
  2. Heat oil in stockpot on medium-low. Add onions; cook, stirring, about 2 min, until soft but not browned. Add celery, ginger, carrots, and garlic; cook, stirring, 5 min, until soft but not browned. Add tomato; cook 5 min. 
  3. Add stock, 2 cups water, turmeric, cumin, salt, black pepper, and chili powder. Bring to simmer. 
  4. Add reserved whole and pureed lentils plus liquid. Cook about 15 min, until lentils are tender. 
  5. Combine cornstarch and remaining 2 Tbsp water in small bowl. Bring soup to boil; add cornstarch/water mixture. Stir 30 seconds to thicken slightly. Season to taste with salt.

1 comment:

Jessie said...

That soup looks really good. I need to make some, especially as we are buried under snow.

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