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Sep 14, 2011 06:35 AM

how do you season your lentil soup?

I make a really good lentil soup--but the Mr. and I were out recently and had some GREAT lentil soup. How do I get mine from really good to great? I'm thinking it's all in the spices, but not sure of which ones. Please please clue me in.


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  1. Parsley, bay leaf, garlic, mirepoix, sometimes oregano, shallots, and lemon juice at the end---or a splash of wine vinegar.

    1 Reply
    1. Cumin, salt, pepper and fresh lemon. Seriously- fresh makes a difference.

      This recipe is from a local Toronto-area joint and it's killer:

      3 Replies
      1. re: biggreenmatt

        I am with biggreenmatt -- fresh lemon juice takes it to a whole different level. Sometimes I use vinegar but lemon juice is the best.

        1. re: biggreenmatt

          I LOVE middle-eastern style lentil soup. Thanks!!

          1. re: biggreenmatt

            Thumbs up on this. I'd only add a few red pepper flakes, too.

          2. Black mustard seed, turmeric, cumin seed, hot peppers, onion, grated ginger and garlic. Or: cinnamon, cloves, turmeric, cumin, grated ginger and garlic, onions, sometimes hot peppers.

            Toast the spices over dry heat, then add oil, onions and peppers, followed by ginger and garlic.

            1 Reply
            1. re: odkaty

              Ditto. Or garam masala, shah jeera, plus a bit of lemon. When serving, add more browned onions and eat with naan.

            2. Ham Bone....or smoked pork or turkey parts

              2 Replies
              1. re: fourunder

                Agreed - I only make lentil soup if I have a good ham bone to make broth first. The soup then simply has onion, celery and carrot, some thyme, maybe some red pepper flakes. I usually throw some of the chopped ham in, too.

                1. re: fourunder


                  Ham or smoked turkey is my usual basis.
                  Mirepoix, garlic, parley, bay leaf, salt and pepper.
                  Sometimes tomatoes or curry powder (rare occasion).

                2. I love Egyptian Red Lentil Soup- similar to what's mentioned above.