This is a quick soup for a cool day. Sautéing the Brussels sprouts and cauliflower separately concentrates their flavor and maintains their texture and color, contributing to the overall pleasantness of this hearty but light vegetable soup. As with almost any soup, making it the day before and letting it cool overnight will make a richer, more balanced final product.
Yield: About 10 cups of finished soup
1/2 cup small diced celery (about 1 large stalk)
1/2 cup small diced onion
2 large cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
1 cup red lentils
5 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling on top of the soup
3 cups of 1 inch cauliflower florets (about 1/2 head of cauliflower)
3 cups of thinly sliced Brussels sprouts (about 10 large sprouts)
2 pinches curry powder
1 sprig fresh thyme
10 chives, snipped into 1/2 inch pieces
8 cups water
Coarse Kosher salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
The cooking of the lentils can be done the day before
Heat 2 Tbsp. of olive oil in a 1 gallon pot on med-low heat. Add the celery and onion and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5 minutes or until onions are tender and translucent
Add sliced garlic and cook for 1 minute.
Add the lentils and 8 cups of water. Bring to a gentle bubble, season to taste and let cook for about 10 minutes or until lentils are tender. While this is going start your sautéed veg.
For the sautéed sprouts and cauliflower:
In a 12 inch skillet heat 3 Tbsp. of olive oil on med-high heat. Add the sprouts, cauliflower and thyme. Season immediately with salt, pepper and the curry powder.
Sauté for about 5 minutes or until the veggies are al dente.
By this time the lentils should be tender. Stir the sauteed vegetables into the lentils, bring to a simmer and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.
Ladle into bowls immediately. Drizzle some olive oil over the soup and sprinkle over the chives.