Vegan Middle Eastern Lentil Soup | Shorba
I first had this kind of lentil soup in Dubai as we visited Rob’s parents during the time they spent living there. It was one of my favourite flavours of the region. I can also attest that I ate a looot of hummus during our stays. Who wouldn’t!? Either way this lentil soup stuck with me and I started making it at home as well. It is equally delicious and is made with simple ingredients that many of us recognise.
It’s a smooth lentil soup flavoured with cumin and turmeric for the vibrant yellow colour. It also has a good amount of lemon juice which really lifts the flavours and gives it a nice zing. Split red lentils are used as the base of it which is great as they cook quickly making this recipe a good quick meal on lazy days. It also freezes well and keeps well in the fridge making it perfect for meal prep. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I do!
Lentil Soup | Shorba
1,5 cups red split lentils, rinsed and drained
1 brown onion, chopped
1 celery stick, chopped into small pieces
1 carrot, chopped into small pieces
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
6 cups vegetable broth or sub water and one vegetable stock cube
2 tsp cumin powder
0,5 tsp ground turmeric
1 bay leaf
1 lemon, juice only
Salt and black pepper, to taste
A handful chopped fresh parsley
Lemon wedges for squeezing
Chop up the vegetables to a similar size, except for the garlic. Saute them in a pot over medium heat with a little oil, I use rapeseed, for 3-4 minutes. Add in the roughly chopped garlic and saute another couple of minutes until the vegetables look glossy and have softened some.
Add the spices including the bay leaf to the pot and mix well for about a minute. Then pour in 6 cups of vegetable broth, or you could sub water and vegetable stock powder or cube. Also add in your rinsed and drained split red lentils.
Season with salt and pepper and cover with a lid. Bring the soup to a boil and then turn it down to a simmer. Cook like this for roughly 20 minutes or until the lentils are cooked and disintegrating into the water and the vegetables are soft.
Take the soup off the heat, remove the bay leaf and blitz until super smooth using a stick blender. You could also use a high speed standing blender for this but I prefer the stick blender personally.
Squeeze in the juice of a whole lemon and mix it through the soup. Give it a taste and season to your liking with salt and black pepper.
Serve in bowls and top with some fresh chopped parsley, toasted seeds for crunch and a lemon wedge or two for squeezing.