Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Green Lentil Soup with Curried Brown Butter

I finally made a dinner worthy of the blog. As much as I normally love my quality kitchen time,  I've been a bit lazy about trying new recipes lately. This one is exceptionally delicious. I always say that, I know, but really, it is awesome. I actually went back for a second serving, because I couldn't resist the spicy, warm taste. I can't wait for lunch tomorrow! 

I served the soup with a piece of toasted garlic naan. The original author recommended pan frying a few paneer cubes in the leftover brown butter and topping the lentil soup with them. I must try that!

Original Inspiration: Super Natural Every Day
Serving Size: 5 big servings
WW: 8 pointsplus per serving


2 tablespoons extra-virgin coconut oil or unsalted butter
1 large yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
5 1/2 cups of vegetable broth 
1 1/2 cups (10.5 oz) green lentils, picked over and rinsed (you could also use green split peas)
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, sliced into 3 or 4 pats
1 tablespoon Indian curry powder
1/2 cup light coconut milk
sea salt
fresh chives, minced 


Melt the 2 tablespoons of coconut oil or butter in a large soup pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and red pepper flakes and cook for a few minutes, stirring regularly, until the onions soften. 

Add the vegetable broth and lentils, cover, and simmer until the lentils are tender. This will likely take between 25-45 minutes, depending on the lentils. It took about 30-35 minutes for me using sprouted green lentils. 

When the lentils are almost done, it is brown butter time. Listen carefully, my friends, as I had to do this twice since I burned my first batch.  This whole process will take about 3-4 minutes. Pull out a small, thick-bottom saucepan or skillet and set the 3 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Whisk the butter frequently as it cooks. Once the butter melts, it will start to foam up - keep whisking. When the foam subsides, watch the butter carefully and remove from the heat as soon as the butter starts to smell nutty and light brown specks start to form on the bottom of the pan. Whisk in the curry powder and stir until the spices are fragrant, which should take less than a minute. 

When the lentils are tender, remove them from the heat and stir in the coconut milk and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Then, puree with an immersion blender to your desired texture. You can leave it a bit chunky, as I did, or puree it until it is smooth. Stir in half of the curried brown butter and taste. You may need to add more salt at this point, depending on the saltiness of your stock. Serve drizzled with the remaining spiced butter and a healthy sprinkling of minced chives.