Carrot, Spinach and Puy Lentil Soup
I can’t believe I’ve only got round to blogging this soup, as it’s definitely one of my favourite chunky broths. With spring bringing us giant leaves of seasonal spinach, I thought that I should get the recipe for this perfected and ready to post. This is vaguely based on a recipe by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall which was one of the first soups I ever started cooking when I turned vegan, but I’ve tweaked it quite a bit since then. In mine, Puy lentils and carrots are cooked in a rich tomato and thyme broth which is brightened up with lemon and parsley right at the end. Fresh spinach is thrown in at the end also, but not cooked with it so it just has the opportunity to wilt in to the hot soup and retain it’s bright green colour. Of course, it’s got a little kick from chilli too, making this warming and healthy bowl perfect for when you’re feeling under the weather.
The vegetables can be changed up too; I make this through the winter with shredded kale instead of spinach, or the carrots could be substituted with sweet potatoes (bear in mind that sweet potatoes take less time to soften than carrots so would need to go in 15 minutes after the lentils). Brown or green lentils will work too, although I love the elegance and the ‘bite’ of Puy lentils.
- 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
- 100g onion (1 medium), chopped
- 10g garlic (2 cloves), crushed
- 2 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp salt
- 3/4 tsp dried chilli flakes
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 can chopped tomatoes
- 100g puy lentils
- 250g carrots, chopped in to 1/2 cm cubes
- 800ml vegetable stock
- 60g spinach, roughly chopped
- 6g parsley, stalks finely chopped but leaves roughly chopped
- 3/4 tsp lemon zest
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- Heat the oil in a medium sized pan over medium heat and fry the onions for about 5-10 minutes, until soft.
- Add the garlic, thyme, salt, chilli flakes and black pepper and fry for a minute more.
- Add the tomatoes, lentils, carrots and stock, and bring to a boil. Then, turn down the heat and place the saucepan lid slightly ajar on the pan, and simmer until the lentils have softened: about 25-30 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and throw in the spinach, parsley, lemon zest and lemon juice. Allow to sit for a few minutes so that the spinach can wilt, and then serve!