Mulligatawny soup

It is most definitely soup season here in Adelaide at the moment, with cold, rainy days that are best spent in warm comfy surrounds with a healthy, hearty bowl of soup. If you’ve never had Mulligatawny before then I hope this recipe will inspire you to give it a try. It is super easy to make and tastes fantastic. It’s basically a curried chicken (or veggie) soup and was something I was craving after spending a couple of days in bed with a rather nasty head cold.

You could definitely make this recipe vegan by swapping out the chicken with some potato, chickpeas and cauliflower and still enjoy the earthy flavours of coconut milk, cumin, coriander and turmeric. I made up a batch of chicken stock a couple of weeks ago which I froze in little containers especially for dishes like this. Making your own stock is a great way to control the amount of salt and oil that goes in and means that you can use up all those old veggies languishing away at the bottom of the crisper. If you haven’t got any fresh stock then you can use a powdered stock (I like the Massel brand) or buy some pre-prepared stock from the supermarket or health food store.

Mulligatawny soup

Serves: About 8

2 tablespoons of coconut oil

1 small onion – diced

3 teaspoons of minced ginger

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

2 teaspoons of ground cumin

1 teaspoon of turmeric

3 teaspoons of ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (more if you like it hot!)

2 large chicken breasts – skin and fat removed, cut in half (OR if making this dish vegan; 1 cup cauliflower florets and 2 large white potatoes, cut into cubes)

1 cup red lentils – rinsed

1 cup long grain rice

3 cups stock

3 cups cold water

1/2 can coconut milk

juice of 1 lemon

In a small blender add onions, ginger, garlic and spices with a splash of oil. Blend together to create a smooth paste.

Heat oil on medium-low heat in a heavy based pan (or dutch oven) and lightly fry the onion mix lightly for 2-3 minutes.

Add chicken (or veggies) cook for 5 minutes, stirring so everything is coated in the spice mixture.

Slowly add the stock and water, stirring the whole time. Allow to heat up a little (about 5 minutes)

Add in the lentils and rice and stir well to combine.

Simmer gently for 15-20 minutes, until rice and lentils are soft.

Remove chicken from the pot and shred/cut into small pieces. (If you are using veggies they will probably be ok at the size they are)

Using a stick blender, blend up the soup a little. You don’t want to blend the whole thing, just a few cups (if you don’t have a stick blender then remove 3 cups of the soup – make sure you get some of the lentils and rice, and run through a standard blender).

Return the soup to the pan with lemon juice, chicken and coconut milk. Stir well and heat lightly for about 5 minutes – don’t boil, just heat lightly. Check the seasoning and add a little salt if necessary.

Serve in a deep bowl with a thick chunky slice of bread. Garnish with some freshly sliced coriander, a splash of Tabasco and cracked black pepper.


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