I love shopping at farmers’ markets as one always finds unusual fresh produce. Today proved to be one of those days. I scored lots of great produce. The big find was fresh young ginger complete with tender shoots and leaves. Given I hate wasting I thought it might be kind of cool to cook the shoots and leaves, well at least add them as a seasoning to soup.
It was cloudy outside so a perfect time to have a body warming soup. I love red lentils so it seemed like a perfect thing to eat on a fall evening. This recipe was put together on the fly. Given I had no yellow onions, I used leeks and red onions. I thought some orange bell peppers would be nice and sweet so I put some of those into the soup. I did have some hot Ethiopian Berbere peppers so I added one small green one to the soup. But the star of the soup were the ginger leaves and shoot. They proved to be delicate and sweet. The soup itself was very delicate and yet flavorful. A perfect dish for a cool evening.
The soup was garnished with some Indian Micro Greens from Baia Nicchia Farm and Nursery.
Luscious Lentil Soup with Fresh Ginger Leaves and Shoots
1 cup red lentils
2 cups chopped leeks
3/4 cup diced red onion
1 large clove garlic – finely chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
2 cup vegetable stock
2 cups water
2 ginger root leaves
1 tender young ginger root shoot
1/4 tsp ginger root – grated on microplane
1 cup diced orange bell pepper
1 small berbere pepper – finely diced
2 tsp canola oil
garnish: Indian Micro Greens
1. Heat canola oil in heavy bottom pan.
2. Add the leek to pan along with salt and saute for 5 minutes until softened.
3. Add the red onion to pan and continue sauteing until softened – another 8 minutes.
4. Add the bell pepper to pan, saute 5 minutes.
5. Add the berbere pepper to pan along with grated ginger root and saute 5 minutes.
6. Add the garlic to pan and saute 2 minutes.
7. Add the red lentils to pan and briefly saute.
8. Add the vegetable stock, water, ginger leaves, ginger shoot and cardamom.
9. Simmer for about 40 minutes until lentils are cooked.
Serve piping hot garnished with Indian Micro Greens… Delicious.