Random rewritten recipe – Spicy carrot and lentil soup

No photos, because I was busy eating the soup, but it was light orange, as you’d expect.

Ok, so I thought I’d mix around Friday soup night and add a new soup to the repertoire. Normally I’m making either potato and leek soup or a red curry pumpkin soup, both of which are fantastic, but having other options are also good. I found this recipe originally on the BBC Good Food website, and while reflecting on the recipe decided that I could definitely make it much more delectable, so here we go.


  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • pinch chilli flakes (or as much as you like)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced (or crushed or whole it doesn’t matter hugely)
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp chaar masala
  • 600g carrots, washed and coarsely grated (no need to peel)
  • 140g split red lentils, rinsed
  • 1L hot vegetable stock (from a cube is fine)
  • 125ml milk (or coconut cream)
  • salt and pepper (as necessary to season)
  • plain yogurt and naan bread, to serve


  1. Heat a large saucepan and dry-fry 2 tsp cumin seeds and a pinch of chilli flakes for 1 min, or until they start to jump around the pan and release their aromas. Scoop out about half with a spoon and set aside.
  2. Add 2 tbsp olive oil to the same pan and add the onion and garlic. Cook over a low heat until soft (5 – 10 minutes).
  3. Add the tomatoes and chaar masala and cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the coarsely grated carrots, split red lentils, hot vegetable stock and milk to the pan, stir and bring to the boil.
  5. Simmer for 15 mins until the lentils have swollen and softened.
  6. Blend the soup with a stick blender or in a food processor until smooth (or leave it chunky if you prefer).
  7. Season to taste and finish with a dollop of plain yogurt and a sprinkling of the reserved toasted spices. Serve with warmed naan breads.

Notes on this recipe:

  • It tasted good, and was nice and thick. The addition of chaar masala and the tomato made it a lot more dahl like, and that is a good thing in my opinion
  • I could probably have cooked the onions more when I made this so there was a bit more umami flavour.
  • The most time consuming bit of the recipe was grating the carrots. Otherwise it was a pretty simple and quick affair.
  • If you don’t want to make chaar masala you can use garam masala instead.