Sunday, April 3, 2011

Roasted Yam and Red Lentil Curry Soup

This soup started off as an idea and quickly morphed into a really great recipe. I think I changed direction about three times while making this soup. I realized that one yam was not going to make a very substantial recipe so I decided to add one cup of red lentils simply because that's all I could think of at the time. I'm glad I did however as it turned out really good in the end.

Work has been very busy for me lately so Mike has stepped up to act as head chef in our kitchen for the past couple of weeks. I would have overdosed on grilled cheese sandwiches if it weren't for him. During this time, I have witnessed Mike doing some very comical things that I absolutely must share with you! I wish I had some of these moments on video:

Recap 1) Mike is broiling bread on parchment paper, bread is still not browning so Mike takes things into his own hands... Mike is holding pan closer to broiler... parchment catches fire! Lyndsay can't stop giggling because Mike is now blowing out flames!

Recap 2) Lyndsay and Mike are planning on making a quick puff pastry tart with roasted tomatoes and goat cheese....Mike notices puff pastry is frozen in freezer... he quickly finds a solution when spotting a notation on the box which states that you can defrost in microwave for 2 minutes on low...Mike forgets to change temp to low an instead of defrosting he actually melts the dough...Lyndsay having a giggle fit but trying to be supportive at the same time.... Mike on his way out the door to buy more puff pastry!

Recap 3) Mike is making no stir risotto. He has read about this concept in "Cooks Illustrated" and wants to wow Lyndsay with this new revelation! Mike has everything in place and everything seems to be going well. He has now added the liquid to the arborio rice, stirred once as directed and covered with lid. Mike is now sitting down with Lyndsay filling her in on how he is about to wow her with this very simple risotto recipe in hopes that she will never have to complain again about the labors of making risotto... Lyndsay notes that something is burning... Mike also notices this.... Mike checks on risotto which appears to be burning to the bottom of the pan... so much for no stirring! *I must note that this turned out to be one of the best risottos I have ever had, I think Mike just needed to turn the heat down as he was using a dutch oven.

  • 1 large yam, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • fresh ground salt and pepper
  • 1 large sweet onion
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 apple, cored and diced
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/2 tsp tumeric
  • 1.2 tsp cumin
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  1. Toss diced yam and garlic cloves with a enough olive oil to coat and pour into a large roasting pan. Sprinkle lightly with fresh ground salt and pepper. Bake at 400° until fork tender, about 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large dutch oven, saute onion and celery in 1 tablespoon of butter until the onion begins to caramelize, about 10-15 minutes (use medium heat otherwise you will burn the onion instead of caramelizing). Add the diced apple during the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  3. Stir in curry powder, coriander, turmeric, cumin and lentils and cook stirring constantly for one minute. Scrape in yam and any bits stuck to the roasting pan and immediately pour in broth, bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook uncovered for about 30 minutes.
  4. Puree soup with a hand held blender. I would also recommend straining this soup through a fine mesh strainer or by using a food mill as I did. Add water if the consistency of your soup is too thick and salt to taste.
  5. Serve soup with Naan bread and toasted pumpkin seeds.
Note: This soup would also be nice with the addition of coconut milk.