Mediterranean Spicy Lentil Soup With Spinach

The secret to this spicy lentil soup recipe is in the bold aromatics and warm Mediterranean spices. And don’t omit the lime juice; it will brighten the soup and pull the flavors together in the best way possible. Use a bag of frozen spinach, no need to thaw ahead of time. And forthe lentils, I recommend green, black, or small brown lentils.

▢extra virgin olive oil, I used Hojiblanca Spanish EVOO
▢1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
▢1 large garlic clove, chopped
▢kosher salt and black pepper
▢1 ½ teaspoon ground coriander
▢1 ½ teaspoon ground cumin
▢1 ½ teaspoon sumac
▢1 ½ teaspoon crushed red peppers
▢2 teaspoon dried mint flakes
▢Pinch of sugar
▢1 tablespoon flour
▢6 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
▢3 cups water, more if needed
▢12 ounces frozen cut leaf spinach, no need to thaw
▢1 ½ cups green lentils or small brown lentils, rinsed
▢1 lime, juice of
▢2 cups chopped flat leaf parsley

In a large ceramic or cast iron pot, heat 2 tablespoon olive oil. Add the chopped onions and sautee until golden brown. Add the garlic, all the spices, dried mint, sugar and flour. Cook for about 2 minutes on medium heat stirring regularly.
Now add the broth and water. Raise the heat to high and bring the liquid to a rolling boil; add the frozen spinach and the lentils. Cook for 5 minutes on high heat then reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and cook for 20 minutes or until the lentils are fully cooked to tender. (Partway through cooking, check the liquid levels, and if you need to add a little bit of hot water.)
Once the lentils are fully cooked, stir in the lime juice and chopped parsley. Remove from the heat and let sit covered for 5 minutes or so. Serve hot with pita bread or your favorite rustic Italian bread.

Best lentils for this lentil soup: For this lentil spinach soup, I recommend using green lentils, black lentils, or small brown lentils.
Make-ahead tips: If you can, make this lentil soup recipe the day before you want to serve it. This will give the flavors a chance to meld better and will thicken up the soup as well, making it even more comforting.
Leftovers and storage: Once it reaches room temperature, transfer the lentil soup to an airtight container and refrigerate. It will keep for up to 5 days. Reheat the soup in a saucepan over medium heat. You might need to add some water if the soup has become too thick.

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