This is one of those soups where there really are only a few ingredients. But the emphasis is on the freshest carrots you can get your hands on. My garden is a no-go area so home-grown are out of the question (sadly), however it is pretty hard not to be impressed with the quality of carrots available at the market. Ray Goddards carrots are sweet, crunchy and unbelievably good value...where do you get anything for $2-4 dollars these days? Even his seconds are better quality than the supermarket. Actually why i am on the subject of carrots and supermarkets can anyone enlighten me why their carrots are all the same size, washed so that they need not be peeled and have absolutely no flavour and if they were not bright orange i might have trouble thinking that it was a carrot? It saddens me as this is what the majority of the population eat and this is what our children think vegetables taste like....nothing. Is it any wonder we have trouble getting our children to eat their 5 a day!
Any how back to the soup. I will be making this at the market on Saturday and you can taste just how sweet, smoky and pure it is. I thought it might be a good soup to whip up if like me you are cold and just like to sip away on a bowl of goodness.
|photo Sarah Cowhey
CARROT AND CUMIN SOUP
When making a soup like this it is paramount that you get the freshest, sweetest market ingredients available as the end result will be far superior!
2 tsp cumin seeds
pinch chilli flakes
2 Tbsp olive oil
600g carrots, washed and coarsely grated (no need to peel)
140g split red lentils
1litre hot vegetable stock
plain yohurt and good quality bread to serve
Heat a large saucepan and add the cumin seeds. Dry-fry the cumin seeds until they become fragrant (1 minute) add the chilli flakes and toss around briefly. Remove half of the seeds and set aside.
Add the oil, carrot, lentils, stock and milk to the pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 30 minutes or until the lentils and carrots have softened.
Whizz the soup with a stick blender or in a food processor until smooth (or leave it chunky if you prefer). Season to taste and finish with a dollop of yogurt and a sprinkling of the reserved toasted spices.
Serve with some good quality crusty bread.
|photo Sarah Cowhey