Saturday, March 28, 2015

Recipe: Mulligatawny Soup

Mulligatawny Soup
This is the soup I tried to make unsuccessfully for years.  I don't know what went wrong or why I wouldn't just admit what I was craving when I wanted warming spices, vegetables, tender raisins, coconut hints, and lentils was just straight up mulligatawny, but I went off course a few times before sorting myself out enough to make a straight mulligatawny that was delicious, warming, full to bursting of flavor, and just plain self high-five worthy.  It was so tasty that when my coworker was out under the weather, I knew it was just the thing to bring in the dead of four feet of Boston winter to warm her up.  

But before I do tell you about the recipe, let me tell you a little story.  

All zero of you reading this may recall that I spent roughly five years working to realize a one year New Years resolution.  You know, that time I made 52 recipes in my Le Creuset.  Well, roughly three days after posting my reflections on the completion of said resolution, the.worst.thing.ever.happened.

My Le Creuset broke.

Yes.  Broke.  I realize this is an exaggeration; I'm pretty sure the actual pots would survive an A-bomb.  But in highly traumatic fashion, the handle came off in my hand, and the screw disappeared into the pot of red lentils and farro I'd been dying to eat.   It was late, I was hungry, and so I did the only logical thing.  I texted my girlfriends with shocked face emoji's, a picture of the handleless lid, and ate a bowl of soup with a tiny spoon.  You know, to prevent death by accidental screwing.  

Luckily, a call to Le Creuset's customer service line was just as pleasant as a display of their goods.  The honey-voiced call center woman was super kind and promised to have another lid sent right out, asap.  I was like right, sure...asap, see it in five months.  Did you hear we had some snow in Boston this winter?  I had my doubts about any kind of deliveries happening, other than more snow.  But deliver it they did, or rather the United States Post Office did, just about two days later.  During the fourth massive snow storm.   
Special Le Creuset delivery!
The USPS delivers.
So USPS and Le Creuset customer service, this soup is for you.  Stay warm this spring, guys.  Because yes, it is still snowing in Boston.  

(And yes, I did find that screw.  Eventually.)

Mulligatawny Soup
adapted from the Soup Bible and the New England Soup Factory cookbooks

Mulligatawny Soup
1 Tbsp coconut oil
2 cloves garlic pressed
1 onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 celery ribs, diced
1 cup red lentils
8 oz canned chopped tomatoes (drained)
1 16 oz can chickpeas, rinsed
4 cups vegetable stock
2 tsp curry powder
¼ tsp cayenne
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp corriander
½ tsp cloves
1 can coconut lite milk
¼ cup golden raisins (optional)
salt & pepper
Mulligatawny Soup

  1. In a large Le Creuset over medium-low, saute the garlic, onion, carrots, and celery for approximately 7 minutes until they begin to brown and become translucent.
  2. Add lentils, tomatoes, chickpeas, and spices.  Stir to combine and add stock.  Add raisins if you use.
  3. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to a low simmer, and cook partially covered for 45 minutes.
  4. Add coconut milk, bring back to a boil for 3-5 minutes (the coconut milk) causes the temperature to drop) and season to taste.
  5. Serve hot (suggestions below). Try to share.  Nobody likes a soup nazi.  


  • Cloves can be really overpowering.  I recommend starting with half the recommended amount and then deciding if you’d like more.  Not everyone likes them!
  • This is shockingly easy and quick to make, but like chili, I find it tastes better the day after.  
  • Serve with a nice crisp green salad, crusty bread, naan, or other warm flatbread.  And beer.  Or wine.  And sriracha.  Never leave that one off the table, or I will turn soup nazi on you.

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