Soups are ideal for when the weather is bleak and cold, but they are also wonderful for when you want a light meal or are feeling under the weather and need some nutrients that will stick to your ribs and fill up your tummy. Lentil soup is exactly the right soup for just about any time you crave a bowl of warm and filling goodness!
Wash then soak the lentils for 20-30 minutes while you prepare the rest of your ingredients.
Heat oil and butter in a pan, add the onion and fry until golden. Add the garlic paste followed by the chopped capsicum, carrot, potato, tomato, green chillies, salt, cumin and turmeric powder. Cook for a couple of minutes, then add the drained lentils. Stir them in for another 2 minutes then pour in the water. Bring to a simmer, turn down the heat and allow to simmer gently for about 20 minutes or until the lentils and veggies are all tender. Squeeze in the lemon juice and sprinkle some black pepper powder.
Use an immersion/stick blender to whizz everything to a smooth consistency (or you can leave it a tiny bit chunky like I normally prefer to). Alternatively, you can simply use a jug blender to blend the soup once it has cooled down slightly. Taste and adjust seasoning. For a thicker soup, simmer for a bit longer. To thin it out, simplly add some warm water.
Serve with a garnish of freshly chopped coriander, finely sliced red chillies and a fresh squeeze of lemon. The soup goes beautifully with chunks of warm crusty bread or naan.