Brown Lentil Soup with Broccoli, Turmeric, Fenugreek seeds and black pepper. Warming Winter Dal with veggies and fenugreek for healing and detox. Vegan Gluten-free Soy-free Recipe
If you haven’t noticed yet, we love Indian brown lentils over here. Dals can be made in several ways with the lentils and different spices, a combination of lentils, pulses, veggies and such.
This soup came about from my Sri lankan Lentil Coconut curry. The fenugreek seeds add a complex flavor to the soup. Fenugreek seeds are also known to help digestion, slow down absorption of sugar, and reduce inflammation. The whole seeds and ground up with black pepper, turmeric, coriander and cinnamon and used to flavor the soup. Cook lentils of choice and add the spices and veggies and simmer. Warming, pleasing and so good. Make this Dal Soup and serve as is with crackers, flatbread, or over rice or other cooked grains.
There are probably 200 recipes of some kind of Lentil soup or Dal on the blog. Pulses for the win! From the recent recipes, try the Chana Dal Veggie Soup, Lentil Chard Dal, arestaurant style Punjabi Dal Fry (video recipe). Mom’s Sabut Masoor – or Brown Lentil Soup. Make the dal into a meal by cooking grains with it like this Brown Rice and Lentil soup, or Mung Bean Brown rice Kitchari. Often the different lentils and beans can be used interchangeably for variation (adjust water and cooking time depending on the lentil or bean). Brown or Green Lentils and whole green Mung beans can be used interchangeably without much change in cook time. Split peas, Chana Dal, Toor Dal substitute each other easily. Red lentils can be subbed with petite yellow lentils- Moong Dal(will take 5 -10 mins longer).
If you make this soup or any other from the blog, do tag me on social media (Instagram) or comment below. I love to hear your experiences!
Note: Fenugreek in large amounts (supplements, capsules) might have side effect of inducing labor in pregnant women. In food it is used in very low amounts for flavor. Please consult your doctor for safe amounts for you if you are pregnant.
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- ½ cup lentils, wash and soak for 10 mins
- 2 cups water
- 1 tsp oil
- ½ tsp mustard seeds
- ½ medium red onion, chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic chopped
- 1 hot green chile like Serrano, chopped
- ½ tsp coriander powder or seeds
- ½ tsp black peppercorns, or use ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ⅓ tsp fenugreek seeds, or powder
- ¼ or more tsp cayenne
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- ½ to 1 tsp turmeric
- ½ green bell pepper, chopped small
- 1 large tomato, chopped
- ½ tsp or more salt
- ¾ cup small florets of broccoli
- cilantro and lemon for garnish
- Cook the lentils: Drain the lentils that have been soaking, and add to a pressure cooker/Instant Pot or Saucepan with water.
- Pressure Cook: Close the lid and cook for 11 to 12 minutes at high pressure setting. (Or 2 whistles over high heat, them simmer for 8 minutes over low heat). Let the pressure release naturally.
- Saucepan: Partially cover and cook over medium heat for 20 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes, or until tender.
- Meanwhile, heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. When hot, add mustard seeds and wait for them to start sputtering. (A few seconds if the oil is hot enough).
- Add onion, garlic, chile and cook until translucent. About 5 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Meanwhile, grind all the spices together in a small blender, spice grinder or mortar and pestle. Add to the skillet. Mix and cook for a minute.
- Add tomatoes and bell pepper and a splash of water and cook until tomatoes are tender. 4 to 5 mins.
- Add this to the simmering lentils. Use a bit of water to swirl around on the skillet to pick up any leftover spices and add to the simmering lentils. (Alternatively, if you have cooked lentils, add the lentils to the skillet. Add water if needed to adjust consistency).
- Add salt and broccoli and bring to a boil over medium heat. Continue to cook for 2-3 mins. Taste and adjust salt and heat. Add more water if needed or simmer longer for desired consistency. Cover and let sit for another 2 mins before serving. Garnish with cilantro and lemon if needed. I also often use coconut shreds and cayenne/pepper flakes for garnish. Serve as soup or over rice/quinoa.
Holiday Season and Giving Tuesday today. That means this month we will feature some of the awesome work done by Amazing People. Every year we support some fabulous organizations with the blog and book earnings.
One of the organizations wer are starting to support this year through HAI is BAWS Nepal. They are a small organization working to help animals esp street dogs and cats and also educate people about living in harmony with them.
Another organization we are supporting this year through HAI, is WRRC Bangalore. Working to make larger sanctuary areas and raising funds to rescue and rehab temple and circus elephants, who after decades(40 to 50 years) of living in tiny windowless enclosures, constant abuse, torture, and long working hours at temples and circuses, are finally seeing freedom. Its so amazing to see their eyes not filled with fear anymore.
Locally, we support some animal rescues, dog rescues esp Old Dog Haven, who rescue and provide happy and restful refuge to senior pets. Also, local vegan business Seattle Cookie Counter is currently raising funds to keep their shop open. Vegan shops mean easier choices to be able to eat anything in that shop and support vegan people and a vegan company!