Friday, December 24, 2010

Butternut Squash Lentil Soup

We hosted a small dinner last night and the menu was an easy and satisfying one.

  • Soup- With sweet seasonal butternut squash and hearty lentils, with a touch of curry
  • Salad- Fresh greens with a choice of balsamic and ranch dressing
  • Bread- Cheesy bread straight out of the oven
  • Dessert- Warm brownies with coffee ice cream

The soup was something I made up on the fly, and even with the simple everyday ingredients, the taste was special enough to warrant a post here. This soup would be equally at home if it was served as a dal, with fresh rice and crunchy papads.

Kitchen King masala, that versatile spice mix, is what gives this soup an unexpected taste that has guests asking, "So what did you put in here"? If you don't have this masala, use your own favorite one.

Before starting with this recipe, you will need to cook butternut squash- either oven roasted (takes longer but is more flavorful) or cooked in the microwave.

Butternut Squash Lentil Soup

1. Rinse 1 cup brown lentils (whole masoor) and soak for a few hours if time permits.

2. In a large pot, heat 1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil. Saute 1 medium chopped onion and 2-3 cloves minced garlic until translucent.

3. Add 3-4 cups cubed cooked butternut squash, soaked lentils, 2 tsp. paprika, 2 tsp. Kitchen King masala and 4 cups water or vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and simmer until the lentils are tender.

4. Taste for salt and seasoning. Add salt if required (you will if you used water in the previous step).

5. Garnish with fresh lemon juice and lots of minced herbs- either parsley or cilantro.

This cup of soup goes to Susan's My Legume Love Affair hosted this month by Priya at Mharo Rajasthan's Recipes.

To dunk into the soup, I wanted to make a pan of fresh bread and spotted the no knead garlic cheese flatbread in my bookmarks, from the Baker's Banter blog. I made the dough in my food processor and it came together in just a few minutes. Then I let it rise in the fridge for a few hours while I was at work, then transferred to an oiled pan and let it rise again for a bit while the oven preheated. The fresh bread was wonderful. Today I sliced up the leftovers and made crunchy breadsticks that you see in the picture.

The bread is going to Blog Bites: The Holiday Buffet.

It has been a while since I shared a knitting/crochet project on the blog. This is a little Christmas tree ornament I made for a swap partner, celebrating her first holiday as a knitter (she has been knitting for only a few months).




Finally, we got a plate of cookies artistically made by a little elementary-school-age friend. Isn't this reindeer cookie the cutest thing ever? I can't bear to eat him.


She also wrote me a very sweet card thanking me for the goodies and saying she "epeshely liked the hevanly rugula" awww- the baking was so worth it.

See you on Sunday evening with the Blog Bites Holiday Buffet. Sunday early morning is the deadline so if you have any last minute entries, please rush them to me. Enjoy this holiday weekend, everyone!

8 comments:

  1. loved the bread, and the basket and the cookie too!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Merry Christmas Nupur. Soup looks sooo good and the bread looks yummy. Cookie is absolutely adorable, your little friend did a wonderful job decorating.
    Enjoy your weekend.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Comforting soup..cookie looks soo adorable..

    ReplyDelete
  4. Adorable basket!
    Have been lurking on your blog for long but never left a comment..plain lazy.You have a nice blog..recipes are simple and clean. Also like the way you write.

    best wishes,

    ReplyDelete
  5. Love your moose picture (the last one on the page). Great lentil soup dear. Please feel free to send it to for my MLLA event.

    ReplyDelete
  6. What an absolutely lovely spread! your table is groaning with all that delicious food :) Wish you and V and Dale a very Happy New Year!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi Nupur,

    I tried the soup, and it is my favorite butternut squash recipe, yet! And, thanks for blogging, I think you do it so well!

    Samir

    ReplyDelete
  8. Samir- I'm so glad to hear that! Glad you enjoyed the soup. And thanks for that compliment :)

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to say hello!