When I was younger I used to eat a lot of soup; meat soup, tomato soup, cauliflower soup, vegetable soup.... Usually, only the meat soup was home made, the rest was usually dry powder instant soup. I remember we used to put macaroni in the tomato soup to make it less boring... I still got sick of it after a while, I still can't eat tomato soup.
When I moved to England I just seemed to stop eating soup. The family I worked for didn't really eat it, I tried a canned soup once when I moved on my own but it was terrible and put me off soups for a long time, so until I started making the extremely simple Potato Leek Soup I hadn't eaten soup for ages. I also tried this Pumpkin Soup, but pumpkin isn't really something they have in all stores in Norway and I have been to lazy to get on the bus to go where I know they might have it just to make the soup as I don't really use pumpkin for anything else.
Anyway. I decided it was time to try a new soup. We have a website in Norway called MatPrat (Food Talk), it's full of recipes, usually with meat, but some of them just need a few changes to make them vegetarian. It's there that I found the following recipe for Hot Lentil Soup. The original has chicken stock and pork in it, but I just omitted the pork and used vegetable stock instead.
I was a bit worried about the amount of tomato in it, and also the lentils as I'v never cooked anything with lentils before, but it turned out really tasty! I made a four person batch and ate myself it all in two days! Of course I guess it might be more filling with the meat in it, I did eat it with some nice bread the second day though and filled up much quicker.
The recipe can also be used as a pasta sauce, just use less or none of the vegetable stock. I think I'll try that one day as it was the first thing that popped into my head when I sat down to eat it.
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 red chilli, deseeded and cut into thin strips
1 tbs oil for frying
1 can of red lentils ( I think the one I used was just random lentils...)
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 litre vegetable stock
salt and pepper to taste
1) Sauté the onion, garlic and chilli in a pan with the oil until the onion is glossy.
2) Rinse the lentils thoroughly in cold water. Add the drained lentils and tinned tomatoes to the pan and stir well.
3) Add the vegetable stock and let it simmer for 10 minutes, season to taste with salt and pepper.
A very nice and healthy soup suitable for vegetarians and vegans.