Lentil soup


This soup is so thick, flavorful and comforting that I shall bet my hat that even meat-eaters and bitty babaroos will think it scrumptious.

Lentils may not look or sound very exciting at first, but I have found that they are little hidden gems! Lentils are not only cheap and easy to find, they are also categorized as a Superfood. The Livestrong Foundation raves about their nutritional value, noting that they are high in fiber, calcium, copper, phosphorus, protein, potassium, molybdenum, iron and zinc, and very low in fat and salt. Lentils have vitamin A, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, choline, niacin, vitamin C, vitamin K, pantothenic acid and vitamin E. The soluable fiber content of lentils lowers cholesterol, helps the body maintain blood sugar, and because lentils are so filling they can also help with weight loss. They contain no gluten making them perfect for folks with coeliac disease. Ah-mazing.

As if all that goodness was not magic enough, lentils are also environmentally friendly. Crop production greenhouse gas emissions are largely driven by the manufacture of nitrogen-rich fertilizers, but lentils—as with all pulses—require little to no nitrogen fertilizer because they can process nitrogen from the air. Pulses can also improve the fertility of the soil, reducing the nitrogen fertilizer requirement of other crops grown therefore reducing the use of fossil fuels of an entire crop rotation. Wow. They require far less water than other crops, having a very low water footprint compared to wheat, soybeans or canola, and an incredibly low water footprint compared to beef, pork, and chicken. Double wow.

Now doesn’t that all sound tasty?

This recipe serves about six.
20 minutes prep, plus 45 minutes cooking.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup finely chopped carrot
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 pound lentils, rinsed
1 cup peeled and chopped tomatoes
2 quarts vegetable broth*
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground toasted cumin
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground fennel seed

*I recommend Emeril’s Organic Vegetable Stock.

Place salt into a large pot (6 quart-ish). Set on a medium heat for 2 minutes.
Once the pan is nice and hot, add olive oil.
Next add the diced onion, carrot and celery, allowing them to sweat in the pan for about 6 to 7 minutes.
Add the uncooked lentils, tomatoes, and broth.
Add in the coriander, cumin and fennel seed, and stir to combine.
Increase the heat to high and bring just to a boil.
Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook at a low simmer until the lentils are tender, approximately 35 to 40 minutes.

You can puree in a blender if you prefer, but I like it unblended.

Serve with your favourite hot and crusty bread and remark on how yummy it tastes.

Recipe adapted from this one. Thank you Alton!




Hoekstra, A.Y. and Chapagain, A. 2008. Globalization of Water: Sharing the Planet’s Freshwater Resources. Wiley-Blackwell.

Lemke, R.L., Zhong, Z., Campbell, C.A. and Zentner, R. 2007. Can Pulse Crops Play a Role in Mitigating Greenhouse Gases from North American Agriculture? Agronomy Journal. 99: 1719–1725.

1.Gan, Y., Liang, C., Wang, X. and McConkey, B. 2011. Lowering carbon footprint of durum wheat by diversifying cropping systems. Field Crops Research. 122: 199–206.

1.Lemke, R. and Farrell, R. Nitrous Oxide Emissions and Prairie Agriculture.

Janzen, H. Agriculture and Greenhouse Gases.


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