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3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 medium onion, chopped
½ cup chopped celery
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ medium zucchini, chopped (optional)
1 inch fresh ginger, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
4 cups broth
1 cup dry red lentils
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
Juice of 1/2 lemon, more to taste
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
In a large pot, heat 3 tablespoons of oil over high heat. Add onion, ginger, celery, carrot and garlic, and sauté until golden, about 4 minutes.
Stir in tomato paste, cumin, salt, black pepper, and sauté for 2 minutes longer.
Add lentils, then broth. Bring to a simmer, then partially cover the pot and turn heat to medium-low.
Simmer until lentils are soft, about 30 minutes. Taste and add salt as desired.
Stir in lemon juice and cilantro. Serve with basmati rice and/or naan. Or enjoy by itself as a soup!