Before I move on to today's recipe... I usually make my own smoothies, but who could resist one of these Innocent smoothies sporting a nicely colour-coordinated bobble hat? Apparently Innocent are giving a donation of 25p from the sale of each hatted bottle to Age UK. The one I chose was cranberries, blueberries and cherries and I enjoyed it with some oatcakes whilst I was waiting for my soup to cook. I'm not sure if Poppy was standing guard over it in this picture or waiting to pounce on the hat!
Anyway, on to the soup. I seem to be on a North African odyssey this week so today I'm having Ethiopian Lemony Lentil Soup. This recipe was posted on the Vegetarian Group some months ago and I've been making it on a regular basis ever since, with just a few minor alterations. The recipe just calls for lentils. I use a combination of continental (green) and puy lentils because they each hold their shape and make for an interesting texture. Using split red lentils would make a completely different type of soup altogether.
Ethiopian Lemony Lentil Soup
1Tbsp vegetable stock or olive oil
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 chilli of a heat to suit your palate, finiely chopped, or some dried chilli flakes
200g/2 cups lentils
800mls/4 cups vegetable stock
5cm/1 inch fresh ginger, finely grated
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh flat leaf parsly, finely chopped, to garnish
Saute the garlic and chilli in vegetable stock or olive oil until softened. Add lentils and vegetable stock, bring to the boil and then simmer for around 20 minutes until the lentils are tender. Add more water or stock as necessary. Add grated ginger, lemon zest and juice, season to taste. Serve with chopped parsley or fresh coriander(cilantro) to garnish with a lemon wedge. If I feel a cold coming on or I just want to maximise the ginger flavour, I add from a half to one teaspoon of ground ginger and add another couple of garlic cloves. I served mine today with mini naan bread and a sprinkling of gomasio.