Yellow Velvet Lentil Soup with Cumin and Dried Plums
· 3 cups orange (masoor) lentils, washed well with warm water and drained
· 1 bay leaf
· 1 teaspoon salt
· 2 tablespoons olive oil
· 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
· 1/2 cup chopped shallots
· 1-1/2 tablespoons minced ginger
· 2-1/2 tablespoons shredded unsweetened coconut
· 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved lengthwise
· 3 plum tomatoes, quartered
· 2 teaspoons curry powder
· Juice of 1 lemon
· 10 dried plums, pitted, chopped lo bits
· 1 cup freshly chopped cilantro leaves
1 Fill a deep stew pot with the lentils, bay leaf, salt and enough water to cover the ingredients by 1 inch. Simmer on very low heat for 1 hour.
2 Heat the oil in a skillet and add the cumin seeds. After 2 minutes, add the shallots and ginger, and cook until shallots are glassy. Add the coconut and stir until the coconut is golden brown.
3 Add all the tomatoes and the curry powder, and sauté on medium heat for about 5 minutes until the tomatoes start to wilt and lose their shape.
4 When the mixture forms a cohesive paste, add it to the lentils, stirring over low heat until nicely combined. Remove the bay leaves.
5 With an immersion blender, pulverize the lentils so that the whole mixture is roughly blended, but not totally liquefied.
6 Remove the soup from the heat and add the lemon juice, chopped plums, and cilantro. Stir in these final ingredients and serve hot.