Coconut Red Lentil Soup

I recently decided that I somehow needed yet another cookbook. I was strolling through Second & Charles, had a store credit burning a whole in my pocket, and I came across a crisp new copy of Kris Carr’s Crazy Sexy Kitchen.

Along with the help of my shiny, new Vitamix 5200, I made the Coconut Red Lentil Soup (slightly modified) and have nothing but positive things to say about it. It’s hearty, healthy, and full of flavor! I suggest using lime zest and juice in place of lemon and I used dried cayenne pepper instead of the acutal fresh pepper.

I personally love the flavor of the cumin and coriander seeds when I chew them whole, but if that bothers you, you can simply puree the soup completely for a creamy, smooth texture.

Ingredients:
1 1/2 tablespoons whole cumin seeds
1 tablespoon whole coriander seed
1 1/2 cups red lentils
12 oz can coconut milk (I used light)
1 small white onion, finely chopped (I used my Vitamix for this)
The zest and juice of 2 lemons (try limes!)
half bundle of cilantro, chopped
1/4-1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, to your taste
4 cups vegetable broth (I use Better Than Bullion’s veg base)
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 ripe avocado (optional, but highly recommended)

Add the cumin and coriander seeds to a dry skillet and turn the heat to medium. Toast for about 2 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally, until you smell wonderfulness filling your kitchen. Then, add the onions and sauté for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

Add the broth, coconut milk, lentils, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Refuse the urge to boil the mixture (the coconut milk will separate if you do). Turn the heat just slightly higher than “low” and put a lid on the pot. Leave it alone for 35 minutes. When you return, the lentils will have mostly “melted” into the soup. Remove from the heat, stir in the cilantro, lemon juice & lemon zest.

Top with sliced avocado and get your nomnoms on!

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