Pantry Lentil Tomato Soup with Spiced Sunflower Seeds

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We’ve been clearing out the cabinets lately, and when you do, you realize how many quick and easy meals you can whip up using mostly shelf stable items forgotten in the back of the pantry. This is an excellent example of such a dish – it comes together in 30 minutes start to finish, and really only requires ingredients most of us have at home. We like to make this for a warming lunch – perfect when you work from home – and of course we serve it with a thick slice of bread on the side. The spiced sunflower seeds both look and taste great, and are well worth the extra few minutes of prep work.

Serves 4

Soup

1 medium onion, diced (~175 g)
2 medium carrots, diced (~150 g)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
Pinch of cinnamon
1 tbsp tomato paste
200 g red lentils (~2 dl)
400 g crushed tomatoes
1 l water
2 tbsp vegetable bouillon
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
2 dl milk of your choice (we used oat milk)

Sunflower Seed Topping

1 dl raw hulled sunflower seeds
1 tsp olive oil
Scant 1 tsp smoked paprika
Pinch of salt
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp maple syrup

  1. In a medium sized pot, sauté onions and carrots in olive oil over medium heat for about 5 min, or until softened. Add in the spices and tomato paste, stirring for about 30 seconds until the spices become very fragrant.
  2. Pour in the crushed tomatoes, rinsed lentils and water and stir in the bouillon powder. Cover and bring to a boil, and then lower heat to maintain a simmer for 20 minutes, or until the lentils are completely cooked through.
  3. While the soup is simmering, prepare the sunflower seed topping. Heat up a dry skillet over high heat and add all the ingredients except the maple syrup. Mix well, and then stir until the seeds are golden in color (approx. 5 min). Add in maple syrup, stir one last time, and then take off the heat. Place the seeds in a bowl or on a plate to cool.
  4. When the lentils are done, take the soup off the heat and stir in the apple cider vinegar, salt and milk. Blend the soup until smooth. Season to taste with salt, and serve right away topped with the spiced sunflower seeds.

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