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Mark Hix recipe: Moroccan lentil soup

Serves 4-6

This is an easily-made, delicious soup for when the weather gets a bit nippy. You can use any lentils for this, but traditionally the brown variety are used.

150g brown or puy lentils, soaked for 1 hour
3tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled, halved and finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
3tsp ground cumin
2tsp paprika
20g root ginger, peeled and grated
1 can (approx 200g) of chopped tomatoes
1½ltrs vegetable stock
3tbsp chopped coriander to serve

Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based saucepan and gently cook the onions, garlic, cumin, paprika and ginger for 2-3 minutes, without colouring, until they soften.

Add the tomatoes, vegetable stock and lentils, bring to the boil, season, and simmer very gently for about 45 minutes, until the lentils are just starting to fall apart and the soup has thickened.

Season to taste, stir in the coriander and serve.