22 January 2012

Tomato Red-Lentil Soup with Coconut Milk

Look at me! Finally a free moment for blogging!
Traveling over Christmas break and then hitting the ground running in January with a new show going up next week has turned me into a terrible delinquent blogger. I haven't been reading blogs or responding to comments or posting new recipes. All I can say is thank you for your forbearance and I look forward to doing some catching up.

Winter is in full swing in Paris and my rain boots are getting lots of wear. I swear, if I had known cute rain boots were the secret to avoiding seasonal depression here, I would have bought them years ago (I'm telling you, fellow Parisians, get cute rain boots)! Weather was similar over Christmas in the US, but there were long walks in nature to counter any doldrums. Back in the city, a heavy work schedule hasn't really left time for doldrums either, but on those days when even my rain boots or my new blue and pink wool cape can't perk up the grey weather, there's always food!!

I don't know about you, but after the excesses of Christmas with the family (I'm not going to even think about the quantity of wine and cheese ingested, but man was it good), I've been going for warm, light meals this past month. Soups like classic Potato-Leek and Hearty Quinoa Stew have been favorites on the table, but I also love trying new soups in winter and this one, based on this recipe from the wonderful Art, Food and Travel Chronicles is definitely a winner.

3 shallots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
crushed red pepper flakes (to taste)

About 5 fresh tomatoes, roughly chopped
1/2 cup red lentils

1 Tbsp cumin

2 1/2 cups vegetable stock
1/4 cup coconut milk

salt, pepper

Heat the olive oil in a large pan. Add the shallots, garlic and red pepper flakes.

Saute it for a few minutes, until soft and then add the tomatoes. Let it simmer for 5-8 minutes.
Add the lentils, cumin and vegetable stock. Bring to boil and then let it simmer for about 45 minutes.

Putting aside maybe 1 cup of the soup, purée the remaining and then put back on the stove along with the cup of soup you put aside. Add the coconut milk and heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve hot.