I have one whole day off from obligations of a workish nature this week. So far, I made some not-great carrot muffins (they are sticking to the pans fiercely and aren’t terribly spicy, which is what I wanted), but I am going to push on through and cook a bunch of stuff for lunches and other meals this week, including this (tried and tested) recipe (based on one first seen on an internet message board years ago, posted by Julie, with whom I’ve lost touch), which is probably the best soup in my arsenal (turn away, Laura, the Carrot Hater):
Red Lentil, Carrot, and Coconut Milk Soup (aka Juliekins’ Soup)
(makes 4 to 6 significantly giant servings)
- 3 T vegetable oil
- 2 cups chopped onions
- 1/2 t salt
- 4 cups water
- 1 c red rentils
- 1 cup of roughly chopped carrots (sometimes I just grate them, for easier blending later)
- 1 1/3 cups coconut milk
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 cloves of minced garlic (or grated – I love my wee spice grater)
- approx. 2 T freshly grated ginger (or to taste)
- 1 T curry powder
- 1 t cumin seed
- 1 t coriander seed
- 1 t red pepper flakes
Garnish options: Chopped coriander/cilantro leaves, chopped green onion, spicy oil of some kind.
Heat 2 T of oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions, and salt, then cook them, stirring frequently to prevent sticking, for about ten minutes. Add the water, lentils, carrots, coconut milk, and bay leaf to the pot, throw on the cover, and bring to a boil. Then turn it down to a simmer for about 15 – 20 minutes (until the lentils are cooked) and do this other stuff…
…in a wee pot or frying pan, heat the remaining oil on medium. Add the ginger, cumin seed, curry powder, coriander, and red pepper flakes. Stir more or less continuously and cook until delicious-smelling (about two minutes). Then throw the spicy oily mix into the soup.
Hunt down the bay leaf and remove it. Carefully (CAREFULLY) blend the soup either with a stick blender, or in batches in an actual blender (never fill more than half-way, never put cover on fully (hold it on and make sure there’s a ‘vent’ for steam, but not one that will have the steam hit you in the face), don’t be scared). Keep a measuring cup or big bowl handy for the blended bits, so that you don’t add blended soup to the pot of not-yet-processed stuff.
Top with one of those garnish options, or don’t. This is really good soup. Sourdough is frickin’ great with it.
Ian’s birthday party was pretty grand. I didn’t quite pull the Bitter Spinster Younger Sister Red Wine Drunk role as planned because I was at a really interesting end of the table, with friends of his that I didn’t know well. I did find out how to have amazing fake boobs (and, frankly, phenomenal cleavage) for $1.99/pop. Well, I don’t remember all the details, but I was frickin’ amazed.
Here’s one snippet of conversation:
I: Well, the (Ottawa) Valley and the Rez are not dissimilar in a lot of ways.
G: Except we have longer hair!
Maybe out of context, that isn’t as hilarious. Hmm.
Also went to the Dominion Tavern for the first time since Obama was elected. I did not see That Person (long work story that I won’t/can’t share) and his idiot buddies, thankfully. And, of course, I did see Phil, with whom I did a shot. Because it is very difficult not to. I turned down his first three offers (vodka, tequila, Jager), but couldn’t turn down a end-of-night whiskey. I’m a McLeod, dammit. (Though, obviously, whisky would have been better.)