Curried Lentil Soup

It has been a dry, dry winter.  All around me are parched brown hills that are normally verdant this time of year.  This has not escaped my husband’s notice either.  He keeps a close eye on precipitation totals every winter as we rely on spring-fed water tanks to support a small parcel in a semi-rural part of the coast.  Over the years, he has put together quite the sophisticated system and has not once run out of water.  Mother Nature may answer to no one but she has heard our quiet pleas each year.  Still, he worries.

Despite the arid winter conditions, crisp, chilly nights also call for big steaming bowls of soup.  I had lentils on my mind recently and this meal in a bowl is what I came up with given the contents of my pantry and refrigerator.  The turmeric and curry powder infuse so much boldness into the dish that it belies its ease of preparation.

It is a hearty soup, too.  The lentils and potatoes give it body–I might even suggest that you don’t even need the chicken (or as much of it).  It is truly that comforting and filling.  Served alongside a crusty baguette, you will have all you need to warm you on a winter evening, or in the case of my husband, free you from rainfall worries even for just a little while.

Curried Lentil Soup

  • 2 chicken breast halves, cut in bite size pieces
  • 1/2 cup red lentils
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 3 small turnips, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 small potatoes, chopped
  • 5 cups stock (I used chicken)
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • no-salt seasoning (optional)
  1. Season chicken with salt, pepper and salt-free seasoning.  Cook lightly in olive oil over medium heat, remove from pot and set aside.
  2. In the same pot and using the same oil that the chicken was browned in, cook the onions until they’re translucent then add the rest of the vegetables.  vegetables.  Cook them for a few minutes.
  3. Add the turmeric and curry powder.  Stir with the vegetables until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
  4. Add the lentils, the browned chicken and 5 cups stock and simmer for about 35 -45 minutes or until lentils and veggies are tender.  Ladle into bowls and top w/ cilantro or parsley.


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  1. I’ve been praying for rain too. I don’t like it when fire season is extended into the winter. We haven’t had a fire yet (thank God), but if we don’t get some rain soon we will. Your soups sounds perfect for winter. As soon as it shows up (and it better. I demand rain!), I will make it.

  2. I love yellow curry – this sounds perfect for a mid-winter evening!

  3. This looks & sounds wonderful! I have some chicken that I’d love to trhow into a soup, so I’m going to try it! Thanks for the inspiration!

  4. What a delicious looking soup – really, just the pictures make my mouth water. The chicken chunks and kentils with the curry powder make for the perfect soup for me 🙂 Great recipe!

  5. Oh Jean! This is so delicious!!! I have never used lentils in my kitchen but I would totally change my mind after this post! You really love curry flavor huh, well it works for me because I love curry flavor too! =) Have a great weekend!

  6. Perfectly inspired Indian flavors for a comforting winter dish. You know I am partial to anything Indian! 🙂

  7. Such great colours in this soup. I adore turmeric. Great photos.

  8. Love that soup! I have never tried curry with lentils and what a perfect pairing!

  9. Your soup looks fantastic! I can’t wait to try this recipe myself. Thank you for sharing!

  10. Looks like a wonderful recipe Jean, love the photos! I’m due for a bowl of lentil soup- I’m pinning this on my soup board, thanks for the recipe;-)

  11. This soup looks scrumptious! I’ve been looking for good soups for winter. I’m glad I found this one. Do you use a particular kind of potato? Or does it matter?

  12. I LOVE CURRY…and this looks delicious! I will have to try this recipe some time. ;o)

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