Each week we buy a 2kg bag of carrots which disappear fairly rapidly. You might think that this is because we, as a family absolutely adore carrots and can’t get enough of them – but this is not the case. The truth is, there is a lot of competition for carrots in our house from our four legged friends, in the form of our two donkeys (Sampson & Delilah) and two dogs (Shadow and Biggles). I suspect you might be thinking -donkeys and carrots sure, but dogs – really?! When we got the donkeys five years ago the standard form of bribery treat was carrot – the dogs quickly cottoned on to this and started to lurk around the donkeys whilst the carrot was being given and in an attempt to not show an form of favouritism the dogs were duly given a bit of carrot.
Sampson (right) and Delilah (left)
Over the years “CARROT” has become one of the few words that the dogs respond to. Shadow who is a 12½ year old Belgian Shepherd will now only go outside in the evenings if someone goes to the fridge and gets out a piece of carrot (I think our dogs have us all figured out). I wish I could also say that I was joking when I tell you that Biggles our 8 year old Springer Spaniel comes rushing into the kitchen when he hears a vegetable peeler being taken out of the drawer and will sit by me until he receives the carrot peelings (he always looks so disappointed when it turns out I am peeling potatoes instead).
Today, I decided it was our turn to enjoy the carrots rather than giving them to the animals. I’d made some stock the other day and I wanted to use it in a soup. So, this morning I set to work and made a Carrot and Red Lentil Soup.
Carrot and Red Lentil Soup
- 200g Red Lentils
- 4 large carrots (peeled and chopped)
- 2 small onions (diced)
- 1 garlic clove (finely chopped)
- 1 tsp sugar
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp coriander seeds (crushed)
- 1 litre stock
- Oil (for cooking with)
- Prepare the lentils by soaking them in water for 30-45 minutes, then drain.
- Place the onions and garlic in a large saucepan with a little oil and some sugar. Cook on a low heat until soft.
- Add the cumin, coriander and carrots and cook stirring occasionally for 3-5 minutes, before adding the stock and the lentils.
- Cook on a medium heat for 20-30 minutes or until the carrots are cooked.
- Season according to your tastes and then liquidise the soup, before serving with a little cream or crème fraiche.