Alternative title: I can’t seem to cook lentils without hearing Neil from “The Young Ones” bellowing “guys! There’s some dinner on the floor if you want it!”… Being raised on a comedy series like that is probably the reason I’m a sarcastic git.
“What…The heck…Are they?” My brain mumbled.
“Split red lentils” I mutter as I tear open the bag, lentils spill on to the counter top…over the counter top…Into the pup’s bowl. Pup looks decidedly unimpressed.
“And you’re going to mix them with chickpeas? By ‘eck we’ll be farting like mad!”
I blame ‘The Young Ones!’
1 tbsp olive oil
3 x large carrots
1 x large onion
200g split red lentils
2 cloves of garlic
200g drained chickpeas
2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp fennel seeds
2 pints vegetable stock
Prepare the veggies: Basically just chop the onion (as fine or as chunky as you like) and slice the carrots…
Toast the cumin and fennel seeds by adding them to a hot frying pan for a minute (until they start to darken slightly), then transfer to a mortar and pestle to smush (technical term that).
As you’re smashing the hell out of the seeds heat the olive oil in a pan (over a medium heat)…
…Then add the onions and crushed garlic, cook until tender.
Add the carrots, cumin and fennel then cook for a further five minutes.
Add the stock and lentils – cook to the directions on the back of the pack of lentils (but be mindful that some have a short cooking time, so maybe allow the carrots to soften before adding them).
The ones I used instructed me to boil them for 10 minutes and then simmer for another 15 minutes (they go to a puree).
Add the chickpeas for the final 5 minutes…Then enjoy!
I absolutely love this soup! It’s thick, it’s creamy, it’s buttery and it’s incredibly healthy…Perfect for cold days, hiking adventures (bob it in a Thermos to keep it warm – like I’ve done for my title photo) or days in which you feel in need of a bit of comfort food but without compromising on a nutritious meal.
So folks, what are your favourite lentil recipes?
PS – Starting the Easter break with episode 10 of ‘Fortitude‘ (seriously didn’t expect it to take the route it has!) and episode 2 of ‘Inside No 9‘ season 2 (much love for Shearsmith and Pemberton…Much love).