Originally posted February 14, 2018
A few fictional years have passed since Nan Grady was feeding her friends at the Damselfly Inn, but she’s still very much a voice in my head. Married now, and going by Nan Fuller, and still feeding her friends. I imagine them gathered around the big farm table in her kitchen, guests out enjoying the art museum or a play at the college, or warming up by the fire in the parlor. It’s cold and snowy outside. The pastures are white; the Fuller herd is in the barns. The sun goes down early, so the sky outside is dark, but the lights are burning bright in the yellow Victorian on County Road, and soup is on the menu.
Nan likes comfort food with a little something spicy and unexpected. Pull up a seat at her table, and enjoy!
- 2 T. coconut oil (olive oil is fine, too)
- 1 small onion, diced
- fresh grated ginger to taste (I used a couple of tablespoons)*
- 2 T. finely chopped garlic*
- 1 T. Thai red curry paste*
- 2 T. Vietnamese chili garlic sauce (Tuong Ot Toi)*
- 1 t. salt
- 1/2 t. crushed red pepper flakes*
- 2 t. whole cumin seeds*
- 3/4 t. ground coriander*
- 1/2 t. ground turmeric*
- 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes, do not drain
- 4 c. vegetable or chicken stock/broth
- 1 c. red lentils
- good pinch of saffron threads*
- chopped fresh cilantro (if you’re into that)
- plain greek yogurt, sour cream, or crème fraîche
Basically, adjust all the flavors to suit what you like.
Heat the coconut oil over medium heat, then sauté the onions until they are softened and translucent, but not browned. Add everything from the ginger to the turmeric and sauté for a minute. Dump in the tomatoes, broth, and lentils. Give it a stir, then add the saffron threads. Simmer for about 15 minutes. If you like, you can immersion blend it at the end for smoothness, but it’s not necessary.
Serve topped with cilantro (or not) and yogurt (or other dairy). Yum!