I hope you don’t mind if I squeak this one in before the warm weather settles on us for good.
My brother sent a picture of giant snowflakes falling in the Québec Laurentians earlier this week, big fluffy cotton balls dotting the screen and resting in a pile of white on the spruce branches. I thought it was beautiful but the locals may have a different idea in April.
Still, it feels like we are in a moment of soup.
So if you’re home today with no particular plans and maybe separated from your loved ones, this one is for you ♥
What makes this coconut curry extra special (if i may) is the low and slow roasting method of the vegetables that get incorporated into the mix — a simple process that draws out the deep flavors in the sweet bell pepper, red onion and garlic as they caramelize in the oven with a little salt and olive oil. It’s a method that I talk about and illustrate here that results in delicious embolden flavors.
No bell pepper? No problem. Use cubed sweet potato or toss in some carrots instead. There will be some variance in texture and flavor but we’re all just working with what we’ve got right now. Tomatoes or cauliflower could also be used.
No Fresh herbs? Same here. I’m topping this warm bowl with some crushed Mary’s crackers (have you tried her Super Seed variety, it’s my favorite) and some additional random seeds — sesame and pumpkin.
Red Curry Paste: Any brand can be used here; Thai Kitchen is probably the most common (I was just mentioning to my friend MJ that weirdly but fortunately, I bought a case last year, it was a great deal and the stuff lasts forever) — Mae Ploy is another well liked brand (my Thai buddy’s favorite).
No Red Curry Paste? You can substitute Thai red curry powder or simply red curry powder (roughly 1 tsp powder per 1 Tbsp paste). You can also make your own red curry paste from scratch if you have the bandwidth/ingredients on hand. There are many excellent recipes available on-line.
The Ging: A moment of reverence for the ging please. But seriously, this soup would not be the same without the fresh ginger. So good.
I hope you love this soup friends, wishing you all a beautiful day.
- 170 g (about 1 cup) dry (uncooked) red lentils
- 1 13.5 fl oz (400 mL) can coconut milk (I like full fat)
- 2 Tbsp red curry paste or substitute (see post)
- large knob of ginger, peeled and chopped (about 1 Tbsp)
- ⅓ tsp sea salt
- ⅛ tsp cayenne, optional (for additional heat/spiciness)
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced
- 3 large garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
- ½ red onion, peeled and chunky sliced
- Heat oven to 300 F
- Prepare lentils according to package directions (I make mine in the rice cooker; it will produce about 3 cups cooked lentils)
- Place sliced bell pepper, onion and garlic on a baking sheet (I'm using my miniature baking sheet in photos) drizzle about 1 Tbsp oil and add some salt, mix together & cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour until vegetables have softened and become jammy.
- In a mixing bowl, combine: coconut milk, curry paste, cayenne (if using) and salt, whisking to combine. You will be using this coconut milk mixture to help purée the soup in 3 batches.
- Once lentils are cooked - add half or so to a small blender with a couple scoops coconut milk mixture and the ginger. Blitz until smooth and transfer the purée into a pot on stove (big enough to accommodate entire soup in the end).
- Place remaining lentils in blender with another couple scoops coconut milk mixture and blend until smooth, transferring to same pot on stove.
- When roasted veggies are ready, carefully transfer to blender along with remaining coconut milk mixture and blitz until smooth -- add to pot on stove.
- Mix soup ingredients together and heat as required -- if consistency is thicker than desired, simply add a touch of water. Adjust seasonings to taste and serve with fresh herbs and/or nuts seeds, a dollop of yogurt/cream or as you wish!
- The color and flavor intensity of this soup deepens with time. Stores and freezes well.