Beet and Lentil Soup
The idea of this vegetable soup was improvised by me following my craving and my imagination. I'd been wanting a vegetable soup for a long time, a denser one. It was the detox, no-meat period after the holidays, so I added only lentils for consistency and taste. The soup was unexpectedly tasty, we all ate with great appetite, including Maria, my little girl. You can adjust the taste with sour cream or yogurt and I recommend including all the ingredients for a healthy and delicious soup.
In the title I only mentioned beet and lentils but, actually, it has plenty of other veggies - which you can change according to your likes and means - but the beet and the lentils are the stars, the first one for the colour and vitamins, the second for extra taste and consistency.
can be replaced with beans, chickpeas, peas
about a quarter of a medium cabbage
Canned chopped tomatoes
or some tomato/pepper paste
Step by step
Peel, wash and prepare all the vegetables.
Heat some oil in a deep skillet, add 1 onion and 1 pepper, finely chopped, and the grated carrot.
Stir and cook for 5 minutes.
Stir in finely chopped cabbage, mix and cook for another 10 minutes over medium heat.
This is what the sauteed veggies look like, don't fry them, just braise them a little.
Transfer sauteed veggies to the soup pot (of about 3-4 litres in volume), add in the courgette cubes.
Pour the water, enough to cover well everything and place pot over heat.
When it comes to the boil, tip into the lentils, thoroughly washed, mix.
Don't forget about the bay leaves, turn heat to low and simmer for 30-40 minutes until lentil is ready and boiled.
While the veggies are boiling, we prepare the beet.
In a skillet, cook half an onion in oil, then stir in tomato cubes and cook for another 5 minutes.
Add the beet to the skillet, mix, turn heat to low and saute for about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Beet should be well cooked by now.
When the veggies and lentil have boiled, stir in the beet from the skillet.
Adjust the taste with bors (fermented wheat bran) and salt - boil for 5 minutes.
At the end, add in the finely chopped parsley, crushed garlic and half of raw onion, finely chopped.
Mix well, bring to the boil, then turn heat off.
Let rest in the pot covered with a lid for at least 15 minutes after you turn off the heat, for all the flavours to blend.
Serve with dollops of sour cream or yogurt, if you like.