Inspired by the most recent edition of No Croutons Required, featuring carrots, I decided to simmer up this most wholesome carrot soup inspired by Anna of Diary of a Lady Bird. We all know that carrots are one of the most nutritious of vegetables, containing lots of beta carotene that aid eyesight and overall health. Easy to grow in your backyard, and such a tasty treat raw or cooked, this has always been a staple ingredient in my crisper. Such a delight to fill the soup out with lentils and spices and cashew nuts. I served it with quinoa for an especially satisfying and nourishing meal. I imagine the addition of some fresh or preserved pumpkin would be quite a delight combined with the following ingredients.
Curried Carrot and Lentil Soup with Cashews
4 - 1/2 cups of vegetable stock
1 400 ml can of coconut milk
2 pounds of carrots, grated or finely chopped
1 1/4 cups of red lentils, rinsed
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2/3 cup raw cashews, broken into bits
1 tbsp of vindaloo paste
1 - 2 chili peppers
dash of turmeric
1/4 teaspoon of cayenne
1 teaspoon of cumin
1 teaspoon of ground coriander
1/2 c chopped coriander (cliantro) or parsley, leaves and stems
1/2 c greek-style yogurt of kefir (optional)
chopped coriander leaves or parsley for garnish
sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
In a large pot, bring the vegetable stock and coconut milk to a boil. Add the carrots and lentils, reduce to heat to medium low and cover and simmer until the carrots and lentils are tender - roughly 10 - 15 minutes.
While the carrots and lentils are cooking, heat the olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. When hot, add the onion and cashews. Stir and fry until the onion is soft and the cashews begin to brown. Stir in the vindaloo paste, chopped herbs and ground spices. Stir and fry for a minute or two. Transfer to the pot with the carrots and lentils.
Blend the soup with a hand blender or in batches in a blender or food processor. Simmer for another few minutes, add the salt and pepper and serve. Garnish with parsley or coriander and add a dollop of yogurt of kefir if desired and a sprinkling of red chili flakes.
Other vegetable soups from Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen you will be sure to enjoy:
Curried Indian Vegetable Soup
Indian Chickpea and Pumpkin Soup
Spicy Mung Bean Soup with Coconut Milk
On the top of the reading stack: Field Guide to Herbs & Spices: How to Identify, Select, and Use Virtually Every Seasoning At the Market
Audio Accompaniment: Le Onde by Ludovico Einaudi