Spring Lentil Soup

My new apartment faces a gym. Our floor to ceiling windows directly face their floor to ceiling windows. I get to watch people run on a treadmill and do squats all day. They get to watch me photograph moist chocolate cakes and vanilla bourbon ice cream.

It’s an interesting relationship.

Adarsh likes to watch their cars get towed from the taxi zone below. He’ll stand by the window, until the victim emerges from the gym, sweaty and happy, to see their faces change when they realize their car is gone. “JENN, the tow truck’s coming!!!”. Towing is his sport. It brings him way too much satisfaction.

People ask if watching people exercise is motivating. I say yes, it motivates me to close the blinds…

But seriously, lentil soup is so healthy and wonderful it practically runs on the treadmill for you.

I like to extend soup season by introducing some bright flavours and lots of fresh herbs. This spring lentil soup has the zest and juice of a lemon, and an entire bunch of parsley.   A refreshing take on the warm flavours and spices better suited to winter.

I like my lentil soup quite thick, so I’ve given a range for liquid so you can get the final consistency you like. Hold off on seasoning until the lentils are soft, or they won’t become as tender. Older lentils will take longer to cook than fresher ones.

This soup, like most, freezes well and makes great weekday lunches…

Spring Lentil Soup

Serve with crusty french bread or whole grain toast.

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced onion (from 1 small or 1/2 medium)
  • 1 carrot, peeled and diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • zest of one lemon
  • 1 cup dried lentils (green or brown), rinsed
  • 3 cups water
  • 3-4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 bunch parsley leaves, chopped (yields about 1 cup)
  • salt, to taste

1. Drizzle oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion, carrot, and celery and cook until softened (but not browned), about 8 minutes. Add garlic and cook 2 minutes more.

2. Stir in lemon zest, dried lentils and water. Cover and bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer covered for 30-40 minutes, until lentils are soft.

3. Add chicken stock to reach desired consistency, and bring to a boil once more. Stir in lemon juice, parsley leaves, and season well with salt.

  • http://thecookssister.wordpress.com/ Amber @ The Cook’s Sister

    I didn’t realize that you should cook the lentils before adding spices. Thanks for the tip! This soup looks very comforting and tasty, great for a spring evening.

    • foodess

      It’s just salt you need to wait for… and that applies to all dried beans! Salt early on and your beans won’t become as tender.

  • http://www.girlversusdough.com/ Stephanie

    Yum! I’ve been looking for an easy lentil soup that isn’t too “heavy,” and this definitely fits the bill. Can’t wait to try it!

  • http://www.alairene.ro/ Irina

    Oh, I pity those poor people on a treadmill ! Even if you were photographing just these soup and it would be enough to make them cry:)) I think I’ll give it a try as well. The soup, not the treadmill.

    • foodess

      haha ;-)

  • http://profiles.google.com/clkohan Cheryl Kohan

    That IS a great tip.  And this soup looks so good.  That it takes the place of a treadmill is a real bonus *wink*!

    • foodess

      Thanks Cheryl!

  • http://www.demangotree.com/ Minty

    I literally LOL at “they get to watch me photograph moist cakes” As always I LOVE your beautiful photography.

    • foodess

      Thanks Minty!

  • http://hmsindefatigable.blogspot.com/ hornblower

    I make a very similar soup but have never tried adding lemon & parsley – excellent suggestion for spring! 

  • Coffee and Crumpets

    It’s funny how I have been craving lentils soups lately. Generally, soups are a fall and winter thing…at least that’s what my kids tell me when I produce soup for dinner during spring and summer! I made some lentil soup last week and it was delicious, even with our hot temperatures. Your soup looks delicious and your photos are beautiful! Love all the spring colours.

    • foodess

      I like soup all year long, too.  Though our temperatures are certainly not hot!

  • http://www.thespanishwok.blogspot.com/ Debs @ The Spanish Wok

    I love lentil soups, thanks.  Watching others work out, is a work out in itself LOL.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Nicole-Lunstead/512679562 Nicole Lunstead

    My  husband made this for dinner the other night, and our 11 month old, who had turned into a picky eater devoured two huge bowlfuls! It was absolutely delicious (and easy!). 

  • Chgillil

    I love this recipe! Lentils are such a good item to incorporate into your diet. Vegans and vegetarians can really benefit from eating lentils. They contain iron and protein, key nutrients that are often lost when meat is removed from the diet. It’s already 100 degrees where I live but this recipe has me craving soup. I think I’ll have to try it anyways…I’ll just turn up the AC!

  • Katie

    This recipe looks delicious and I cannot wait to try it! Do you recommend soaking the lentils overnight before cooking? Or is soaking not necessary? I plan to use green lentils. Thank you so much!

    • foodess

      Nope, lentils are the one dried legume you do not need to soak. Just rinse and pick over in case there are any little stones.

  • Jaymac

    Can you recommend a good treadmill?? Just kidding! The recipe looks great. Thank you.

  • Lynne Polischuik

    So funny: My old apartment at Georgia & Bute directly faced the Fitness World across the street, at eye level too. Your line about being ‘motivated to close the blinds’ made me laugh out loud. I used to feel the exact same way :) In any case, I know this is an older recipe but it’s just what I needed this weekend. I’m loving your ‘In Season’ category and the overall new design of the blog. Nicely done :)

  • Chef Chechu

    Simply delicious! Loved the soup. What an interesting mix of special flavours and touchs and suuuper easy to prepare. A keeper that I will certainly prepare again and again!!!

  • GraceElizabethFitter

    Hi! This looks delicious. It is possible that I overlooked it, but about how many servings does this make?