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Julia’s Kitchen Red Lentil Coconut Curry

Updated: Jan 19


I have been making this soup and variations of it for well over a decade and I’m still not sick of it! Feel free to switch up the veggies and tweak the proportions to your taste. If you skip the curry and creamed coconut and add a Berbere spice blend instead, you'll have a delicious Ethiopian soup. The full cookbook will have a recipe for coconut curry paste that is an awesome freezer staple and makes this soup, plus any curry, a breeze to make.


Julia’s Kitchen’s Red Lentil Coconut Curry

Serves 6-8

  • 3 cups split red lentils

  • coconut oil for sautéing

  • 2 medium onions, chopped

  • 4-5 medium carrots, diced

  • 4-5 stalks celery

  • 3-4 cloves garlic, finely minced

  • 1-2 inches ginger, grated (no need to peel!)

  • pinch asophoetida

  • 1 strip kombu

  • 1/4 cup curry powder

  • 1/2 package creamed coconut, dissolved in a large measuring cup of hot water

  • 1/2 cup tomato paste

  • chopped cauliflower

  • chopped spinach

  • sea salt and lemon or lime juice to taste

  • Soak red lentils 8-12 hours in filtered water.

  1. Heat a large soup pot to medium-low heat.

  2. Add coconut oil and swirl around the pan.

  3. Add chopped onions and cook 5-6 minutes until translucent.

  4. Add chopped carrots and celery and continue to cook 4-5 more minutes.

  5. Clear a space in the center of the pan, add 1 teaspoon coconut, add minced garlic and grated ginger, and cook until the garlic is fragrant, about 45 seconds.

  6. Meanwhile, drain and rinse lentils.

  7. Add lentils to cooked vegetables with water to cover by 3 inches and bring to a boil.

  8. Add asophoetida, and kombu and turn heat to a high simmer for about 20 minutes, or until lentils have started to break down, stirring often.

  9. Add the dissolved coconut cream, tomato paste, curry powder, and cauliflower, turn heat down, and continue to cook, stirring often, for 10 more minutes.

  10. Stir in the chopped spinach and season with salt and fresh lemon juice to taste.

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