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Turkish Lentil Soup

What you need: 

1 lb. dried red lentils (brown lentils also work fine)
12 cup water
3 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil
2 cup chopped onions
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup bulgur/couscous or 1 cup cooked rice
4 cup vegetable stock
2 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1- 28 oz. can chopped tomatoes with juice
2 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup chopped parsley
3 tablespoon lemon juice or pepper-infused vinegar

What you do: 

In a huge stockpot (5 qts), bring to a boil 12 cups of water. Add the lentils and 2 teaspoon salt. Simmer for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile in a 3 or 4 qt. pot, saute onions, garlic, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt in the olive oil until slightly brown. Add the bulgur, pepper and cayenne. (If you are using rice instead of bulgur, don't add it just yet.) Stir until well combined and slightly toasted. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, and stock. Simmer 15 minutes.
Add tomato mixture, chopped parsley, and rice (if using) to the lentils, and simmer for 30 minutes or until tender.
Before serving, stir in lemon juice or vinegar (see my recipe for pepper infused vinegar under Easiest Chickpea Salad Ever). Taste for salt and pepper. Garnish with more chopped parsley if desired.

Preparation Time: 
1 hour
Cooking Time: 
Recipe Category: 


This soup was good.  We only used 2 teaspoons of cayenne and it was still VERY spicy.  I would probably use 1 tsp or less next time.

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