Prep 10 mins
Cook 50 mins
This Armenian soup has been my stand-by cold weather soup for as long as I remember! It's rich and flavorful, sweet (but not too sweet) and tangy; perfect for a cold winter's night. It freezes extremely well, too, and is actually pretty tasty served cold (esp. if you puree it completely). A very versatile dish, and so quick and easy to make!
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion, sliced vertically
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1⁄3 cup dried apricot, diced
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1⁄4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano (may use 1 tsp. dried)
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme (may use 1 tsp. dried)
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1 (14 ounce) can crushed tomatoes, undrained
- 1 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 1⁄2 cups red lentils, picked over, rinsed, and drained
- Heat oil in soup pot over medium low heat. Add onion and garlic; saute till onion is just turning translucent and golden.
- Add apricots and cook, stirring constantly (do not let them burn!) till softened and shiny and just beginning to brown, about 4 minutes.
- Add cumin, nutmeg, oregano, and thyme and cook, stirring, a minute or so (until spices are evenly distributed and fragrant).
- Add stock, tomatoes, and lentils; stir till well combined. Bring to a boil, reduce flame and simmer for 40 minutes (till lentils are very tender).
- Just before serving, puree soup (an immersion blender works best). Garnish each serving with a lemon wedge, a dollop of sour cream, and a sprig of thyme, if desired.
uh oh. Wait a minute. I just reviewed this and said it was too tangy and tomatoey, but I had only eaten this cold...but now I'm tasting it warm. And yep, that apricot flavor DID indeed come out. It's a heavy dish, still. Much too heavy for summertime in the Middle East, that's for sure. I'm eating it with corn chips and some cheddar on top. I used fresh apricots and made it mostly in the crockpot, except for my sauteeing (which I did with the garlic and onion). It's not blowing me out of the water, but it does deliver both an apricot and lentil taste (with PLENTY of stewed tomato flavor) for those who want to go that route. Not so sure I will again, but we'll see. A 3.5 star recipe, I'm rounding down because I STILL find the tomato (even while HOT) to be too tangy and distracting.
Not sure if this worked, I'm still getting used to the new format of Zaar... :) So, if the other rating didn't get posted, here it is again: I tripled this recipe, and I still didn't have enough! My family loved it; it was absolutely wonderful. I have four brothers and the oldest is extremely hard to please. I set his bowl down in front of him, he took a bite and decided he loved it. He had 3 bowls! I was a bit skeptical of the soup when I was pureeing it, but I had no reason to be. Thanks sooo much for this recipe, it has now become a staple in my collection. :D