Red Lentil Soup with Cumin and Fried Onions
- TOTAL TIME: 1 HR
- SERVINGS: 6
This velvety soup gets intense flavor from cumin and sweetness from caramelized onions. Toasted bread torn into pieces adds great crunch.
- 2 cups red lentils (12 ounces), rinsed
- 1/4 cup short-grain rice, rinsed
- 3 medium onions—1 thinly sliced, 2 finely chopped
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 2 cups water
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- Kosher salt
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 4 ounces rustic bread, torn into bite-size pieces
- Preheat the oven to 375°. In a large saucepan, bring the red lentils, rice, sliced onion, chicken stock, water, cumin and allspice to a boil. Add a generous pinch of salt, cover and simmer over moderately low heat, stirring, until the lentils and rice are tender, about 20 minutes.
- In a blender, puree the soup in batches until very smooth. Return the soup to the saucepan and season with salt. Add more water for a thinner consistency, if desired.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the chopped onions and a generous pinch of salt and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, 15 minutes. Remove from the heat.
- Spread the bread on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, until nearly crisp; let cool slightly. Reheat the soup, if necessary. Ladle the soup into shallow bowls, top with the fried onions and croutons and serve.
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