Usually by this time of year we have put away our sundresses and started the morning walk into school with sweatshirts or light jackets. We have been lucky this year with summer weather going through to the third week of September. Not complaining here! The fall equinox was this week, yet summer weather is still forecasted for the near future according to my trusted old weather app! I have been at a bit of a loss for dinners because many of our school night dinners usually consist of pre-made stews or soups but given the warm afternoons, we have been in the mood for more summer-ish dinners! Lots of salads and burgers have been on our menu but I saw pumpkins and autumn squash in the stores which seemed to turn my fall taste buds on! I have been craving the warming fall flavors and started leafing through the soup sections in my recipes books looking forward to making our seasonal favorites. Had the idea of posting a weekly or biweekly Soup of Week post to share some of our favorites or new recipes we are trying. I am forever altering or tweaking my recipes, making different variations or combining other cooks’ recipes so I know I will have stuff to share! What do you think? Anyone want to see a weekly or monthly soup recipe?
To start out the season, I made some creamy Lentil Bisque. Historically “bisque” was a French pureed shellfish based soup where the broth and meat of lobster, shrimp, or crab is sautéed with onions, garlic, celery and carrots, thickened with roux, cream or rice. Given it was a lazy Sunday afternoon, and I didn’t have any lobster, crab or shrimp on hand (imagine!!) and wanted a quick soup dinner, I went the plant-based route using lentils and coconut milk to give it a creamy texture and went international using Asian spices to give it an exotic flavor. If you get technical, my soup may not be a “true” bisque but Lentil Bisque sounds sexier than Creamy Lentil Soup. I have to market my meals to young kids, I need recipe names with some umph!!
Thai Lentil Bisque
A spin on a classic French soup that is warming and flavorful with its Asian spices. Can be served at room temperature or warmed up. To add texture, add a scoop of cooked miller or brown rice.
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 large onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tbsp grated ginger
1 tbsp Thai curry paste
1 tbsp cumin
1tsp ground coriander
8 cups water
2 cups red lentils
2 cups coconut milk, light or regular
1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
Sea salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
- In a large Dutch saucepan or soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Cook onions in hot oil for 2-3 minutes or until they begin to turn translucent. Stir in the garlic and ginger, cook for another minute or so as they become fragrant. Stir in the spices, adding in a drop or two of water if the pot begins to dry out and ingredients stick to the bottom.
- Pour in water and bring to a boil. Once water in boiling, add in the lentils, reduce heat to medium-low, cover and let simmer for 30-40 minutes.
- Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Transfer to food processor or use hand blender to puree to creamy consistency. Return to pot, add the coconut milk and option red pepper flakes. Heat over medium-low heat before serving. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Makes about 6 servings.