Mercimek Çorbasi - Turkish Lentil Soup
I saw an article that mentioned Turkish Lentil Soup and decided to google it. It looked simple and delicious, and the real selling point was the half a bag of lentils in the cabinet. My kids like soup any time of year, my son in particular would prefer all his meals come with broth.
2 Tbsp butter
1 large onion, diced
3 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp Pul biber or gochugaru
1 Tbsp paprika, I used smoked
1 1/2 c. red lentils
8 c. chicken stock
Pepper to taste
Fresh chopped mint
Peel the eggplant and cut it in to 1/2 inch cubes. Drizzle with the olive oil and roast at 375 for about 20 minutes until browned in some spots.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large soup pot. Saute the onion until tender. Stir in the tomato paste and pepper flakes and and cook while stirring for a few minutes more until fragrant. Stir in the chicken broth. We all know that chicken stock really does make the best soups but I didn't happen to have any on hand this time so I went with water and bouillon. Even the mediocre bouillon I had on hand worked well enough in this dish with all the other flavors.
Add the lentils, paprika, and pepper, and simmer. But the time I got to this point the eggplant had been in the oven long enough to brown some and I put it in to finish cooking in the liquid and get soft.
Simmer for about 25 minutes, stirring often. The lentils tend to stick to the bottom of the pan. Also check that the soup doesn't get to dry and thick, the lentils tend to absorb a lot of liquid.
Serve with paprika oil, fresh chopped mint, and lemon wedges.
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp. paprika
Stir it together and let sit for a few minutes. I made while the lentils were cooking.