Warming Winter Soup

AuthorAnn Gaffney
RatingDifficultyIntermediate

Warming winter soup makes you feel cozy from the inside out. It's total, delicious comfort. The combo of sweet tasting Kabocha squash, red lentils  and middle eastern spices, gets woken up with a salty hit from miso and a sour citrusy jolt of lime. Served with a drizzle of Extra virgin olive oil and some crunchy croutons finish the bowl off it is perfection. 

Winter Soup
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Yields8 Servings
Prep Time35 minsCook Time1 hrTotal Time1 hr 35 mins
 1 red onion diced
 3 tablespoons olive oil divided
 1 small Kabocha squash peeled cut in 1/2” dice
 1 medium Sweet potato scrubbed cut in 1/2” dice
 1 tablespoon tomato concentrate
 2 tsp ras el hanout spice mix. ( see Quick Tips)
 6 cups water or veggie stock
 1 dried Persian Lime pierced (see Quick Tips)
 1/4 cup red lentils
 2 teaspoons red miso
 Sea salt
 Whole wheat croutons
 2 tablespoons chopped dill (optional)
 Lime wedges (optional)
Method:
1

In a 7qt Dutch oven or other heavy pot, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over a medium high flame. When it ripples add the onion. Sprinkle with salt. Cook stirring until they start to soften and become transparent. Add the sweet potato and kabocha.

2

Cook stirring from time to time for 5 minutes or until the vegetables start to soften at the edges. Add the tomato paste and stir to coat the vegetables. Cook 1 minute. Sprinkle in the ras-el-hanout. Mix to coat the vegetables. Cook one minute more. Add the water or stock - the veggies should just be covered. Stir to mix. Bring to a boil.

3

Add the dried lime and the lentils. Lower the heat to medium low. Cover. Cook at a low simmer until the lentils are very soft, and the potatoes can easily be smashed against the side of the pan, about 40 minutes. Turn off the flame and let the soup sit covered for 15 minutes or until you are ready to eat. I sometimes leave it overnight.

4

Meanwhile in a bowl cream the miso with 1/4 cup hot water until creamy. Bring the soup back to a simmer. Stir in the creamed miso. As soon as the soup starts to bubble again, turn off the heat. If soft enough, squeeze the lime against the side of the pan to release its juices and discard. Stir to mix. Blend the soup with either an immersion or vase blender. If the blended soup is too thick add a little more water to taste. Taste for salt.

5

Ladle into bowls and drizzle with the remaining olive oil. Add croutons. Serve with chopped dill and lime wedges on the side if desired.

Quick Tips

Dried Persian limes add a pleasant citrus sourness to soups and stews. To get their full flavor you will need to make 3-4 small slits in their hard skin. Do this carefully with the point of a sharp knife. If you can’t find them, finish the soup with the juice of 1 lime when you add the miso.

Ras-el-Hanout is a north African blend of ground sweet spices that varies regionally. It can include cinnamon, cumin, clove, nutmeg, coriander seed and ground ginger among others. If you can’t find it a good substitute would be garam masala powder.

If you prefer a chunky soup, once you have removed the lime, leave the soup as is.

Warming winter soup makes you feel cozy from the inside. It's total, delicious comfort. The combo of sweet tasting Kabocha squash and middle eastern spices, gets a sweet and sour hit from salty miso and sharp lime.

Nutrition Facts

Servings 8

 

Ingredients

 1 red onion diced
 3 tablespoons olive oil divided
 1 small Kabocha squash peeled cut in 1/2” dice
 1 medium Sweet potato scrubbed cut in 1/2” dice
 1 tablespoon tomato concentrate
 2 tsp ras el hanout spice mix. ( see Quick Tips)
 6 cups water or veggie stock
 1 dried Persian Lime pierced (see Quick Tips)
 1/4 cup red lentils
 2 teaspoons red miso
 Sea salt
 Whole wheat croutons
 2 tablespoons chopped dill (optional)
 Lime wedges (optional)

Directions

Method:
1

In a 7qt Dutch oven or other heavy pot, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over a medium high flame. When it ripples add the onion. Sprinkle with salt. Cook stirring until they start to soften and become transparent. Add the sweet potato and kabocha.

2

Cook stirring from time to time for 5 minutes or until the vegetables start to soften at the edges. Add the tomato paste and stir to coat the vegetables. Cook 1 minute. Sprinkle in the ras-el-hanout. Mix to coat the vegetables. Cook one minute more. Add the water or stock - the veggies should just be covered. Stir to mix. Bring to a boil.

3

Add the dried lime and the lentils. Lower the heat to medium low. Cover. Cook at a low simmer until the lentils are very soft, and the potatoes can easily be smashed against the side of the pan, about 40 minutes. Turn off the flame and let the soup sit covered for 15 minutes or until you are ready to eat. I sometimes leave it overnight.

4

Meanwhile in a bowl cream the miso with 1/4 cup hot water until creamy. Bring the soup back to a simmer. Stir in the creamed miso. As soon as the soup starts to bubble again, turn off the heat. If soft enough, squeeze the lime against the side of the pan to release its juices and discard. Stir to mix. Blend the soup with either an immersion or vase blender. If the blended soup is too thick add a little more water to taste. Taste for salt.

5

Ladle into bowls and drizzle with the remaining olive oil. Add croutons. Serve with chopped dill and lime wedges on the side if desired.

Quick Tips

Dried Persian limes add a pleasant citrus sourness to soups and stews. To get their full flavor you will need to make 3-4 small slits in their hard skin. Do this carefully with the point of a sharp knife. If you can’t find them, finish the soup with the juice of 1 lime when you add the miso.

Ras-el-Hanout is a north African blend of ground sweet spices that varies regionally. It can include cinnamon, cumin, clove, nutmeg, coriander seed and ground ginger among others. If you can’t find it a good substitute would be garam masala powder.

If you prefer a chunky soup, once you have removed the lime, leave the soup as is.

Warming Winter Soup

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