Meals and Courses

Spicy Lentil and Carrot Soup with Caramelized Onions

cook 30 mins
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh root ginger
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sweet smoked paprika, plus extra to garnish
  • 700 g (1 1/2 lb) carrots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 150 g (5 oz) red split lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 150 ml (1/4 pint) single cream
  • 1 litre (1 3/4 pints) hot vegetable stock
  • 100 ml (3 1/2 fl oz) crème fraîche
  • small handful of chopped coriander leaves
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • Heat the sunflower oil in a heavy-based saucepan, add the garlic, ginger, red chilli, onion and smoked paprika and cook, stirring, over a medium-high heat for 1–2 minutes. Add the carrots, lentils, cream and stock and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, for 15–20 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, to make the caramelized onions, heat the butter and olive oil in a frying pan, add the onion and cook over a low heat for 12–15 minutes or until caramelized and golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper and keep warm.
  • Using an electric stick blender, blend the lentil mixture in the pan until smooth, then season well.
  • Ladle into bowls, add a dollop of crème fraiche and scatter with chopped coriander leaves and the caramelized onions. Sprinkle with a little smoked paprika before serving.
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