Soup probably isn’t a go to meal for most in spring but here in London after a few weeks of warm weather (hooray!) the April showers have set in and there’s a definite chill in the air. I think most of us have hit a bit of a post-Easter slump and are trying to cut back after gorging ourselves on chocolatey goodness. This soup taste’s yum but is also completely guilt-free and cheap too.
This recipe serves 4-6 depending on if you eat it with bread or not. For our family, I doubled the quantity and that was enough for one dinner for the 5 of us (me minus the bread) plus enough for the three kiddo’s for lunch the next day.
I added red lentils to this recipe to make it more substantial (i.e fill us up quicker) but you can omit if you’d like a lighter soup or if lentils just aren’t your thang!
Very easy to keep this dairy-free by omiting the creme fraiche/cream/yoghurt.
Heat a fry pan over medium-high heat and tip in the coriander (or cumin) seeds only. Fry the seeds until they start to sizzle and pop and smell gorgeous (they’ll go quite brown but keep an eye on them so they don’t burn)
Tip the seeds into a mortar and pestle (or if you’re ghetto like me then a deep dessert bowl and the back of a spoon for mooshing) and crush the seeds coarsely. Put the crushed seeds aside.
In a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. In the pot throw in the carrots, garlic and 3/4 of the crushed coriander seeds, placing the remaining quarter aside
Stir so the carrots are coated in the buttery goodness and turn the heat down to low and cover. Cook for approximately 10 minutes or until the carrots have begun to soften
Pour in the stock and lentils (if using) and season with Salt and Pepper
Bring to the boil, lower the heat and simmer partly covered for 25-30 minutes or until the carrots are completely softened and the flavours developed.
Remove from the heat and leave to cool a little (5-10 minutes) before blending until smooth. I did this in a few batches, tipping each batch into a clean bowl/casserole dish as I went along.
Pour the soup back into the saucepan and stir in the remaining crushed seeds, the fresh coriander and the creme fraiche/double cream/greek yoghurt (you can leave this out if you prefer, it makes your soup a touch creamier but it’s up to you). Heat the soup back up in the saucepan, tasting and seasoning as you go (I love me some cracked black pepper and go a bit nuts with it). If you’ve used double cream or greek yoghurt in place of the creme fraiche, don’t allow the soup to come to the boil or it will curdle (eek!).
Serve with a swirl of extra creme fraiche and a sprig of coriander if you’re feeling fancy…
* Recipe is a alightly altered version of this recipe.