Earth and fire…
A spicy lentil soup is so filling and satisfying, in more ways than one. It’s not only that delicious earthiness – a perfect “feel good” soup. It’s also that heat that pairs so well with that hearty flavor of lentil. Pair it with a fresh loaf of bread and you have a meal that – without a lot of flash – simply delivers.
This recipe calls for spicy sausage. We love the real deal in this soup, but you can opt for chicken or turkey sausage for a healthier option, or forgo the meat altogether for a vegetarian dish. The rest of the heat comes from crushed red pepper. Just a little will go far due to the spicy sausage, so don’t over-spice. Add more with the salt and pepper at the last stage if you want to add additional fire to the soup.
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a frying pan, then add in the sausage. Brown the sausage while breaking it into smaller pieces. Place the sausage to the side.
- In the same pan, heat the second tablespoon of olive oil and add the celery, carrot, and onion. Cook, stirring often, until the onion is tender and translucent, approximately 5 minutes.
- Add the ground cumin, crushed red pepper, and garlic to the vegetables. Continue to stir until the spices are well mixed in, approximately 1 minute.
- Transfer the sausage and the vegetables into a stockpot, then add the chicken stock and lentils. Stir occasionally over medium heat until the soup reaches a near boil, then reduce the heat to low.
- Simmer the soup, uncovered until the lentils are cooked and tender, approximately 35 to 45 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with crusty bread.