From the South Beach Diet Cookbook, this is a great warming soup that’s creamy with a hint of Indian spices and heat. I usually make it for a lunch and leave out the chicken. It’s pretty simple to make and takes less than an hour to prepare and cook. Feel free to use fresh ginger and add some ground coriander as I did for a bit more flavor. I have to admit, the first time I made this, I wanted to eat the whole lot; it was that good! The book suggests adding some shredded unsweetened coconut as an additional garnish, should you so desire.
It is listed as Phase 2 due to the carrots as they are not allowed on Phase 1. I suppose you could leave out the carrots for a Phase 1 meal, but I don’t know if that will detract from the taste. And don’t be put off by the long list of ingredients; it just seems long! (Please note: I did not use the chicken in this so you will not see it in the photos)
~~CHICKEN AND RED LENTIL SOUP~~
1 tbsp olive oil
2 small carrots, peeled and finely chopped
2 sticks celery, finely chopped
1 onion, sliced
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp ground ginger (or use fresh)
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander (optional)
1/4 tsp dried chili flakes
145g/5oz red lentils
900g/2lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
700ml/1¼ pints chicken stock
2 tsp tomato puree/paste/concentrate
sliced spring onion, to garnish
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, Add the carrots, celery, onion, garlic, spices and chili. Cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until the veggies have softened.
Stir in the lentils and place the chicken on top. Add the stock, tomato puree and water and stir to combine.
Partially cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until the veggies are soft and the chicken is cooked through.
Remove the pan from the heat, take out the chicken and cut into shreds and set aside.
Transfer about half of the veggies and liquid to a blender or food processor and puree until smooth. (I use an electric hand blender for this step and only puree up until there’s still some chunky bits ~ saves on washing up!)
Then return it to the saucepan along with the shredded chicken, stir to combine and serve.
Garnish with spring onion and or shredded unsweetened coconut.