Lentil and Vegetable Soup with Spiced Yoghurt


Lentil & Vegetable Soup

Winter has arrived in Melbourne! It’s been chilly, rainy and windy. The sun made an appearance today which was lovely but the air was still cold – perfect time for soup and this one will warm the cockles of your heart!

With all the lovely warming spices and the added burst of peppery Tabasco sauce this soup is warming from the inside out!


What you will need:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

2 teaspoons curry powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon garam masala

1 litre (4 cups vegetable stock)

250 ml (1 cup) water

1 bay leaf

185g (1 cup red lentils)

450g (1lb) butternut pumpkin (peeled and cut into 1 cm ½ inch) cubed

400g can chopped tomatoes

2 zucchini – but in half lengthways and sliced

200g broccoli, cut into small florets

1 small carrot, diced

80g (1/2 cup) peas – fresh or frozen

Spiced Yoghurt

250g (1cup) thick soy yoghurt

1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves

1 garlic clove – crushed

3-4 dashes Tabasco Sauce

Spiced Yoghurt

What to do:

Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 4-5 minutes or until soft and lightly golden. Add the curry powder, cumin and garam masala and cook for 1 minute or until spices are fragrant.


Add the stock, bay leaf, lentils and pumpkin. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the lentils are tender, Season well.

Add the tomatoes, zucchini, broccoli, carrot and 500 ml (2 cups) water and simmer for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Add the peas and simmer for 2-3 minutes.

 Lentil and Vegetable Soup

Spiced Yoghurt:

To make the spiced yoghurt, place the yoghurt, coriander, garlic and Tabasco in a small bowl and stir until combined. Dollop a spoonful of the yoghurt on each serving of soup and garnish with a sprinkle of coriander leaves.

Serve with bread – crusty bread or maybe even naan bread – can’t go wrong really!

Enjoy! Xx

Lentil and Vegetable Soup





Easy Indian Dhal Soup

Easy Indian Dahl Soup

Sometimes I really enjoy cooking a particular dish that has a long, slow cooking process, other times quick and easy but not skimping on flavour is the order of the day!

This Dahl Soup fits the quick, easy and flavoursome brief completely!  It really is delicious! And by adjusting the amount of vegetable stock you can decide if it’s more of a soup or the more traditional Dahl ‘stew’.

Having made a bit pot of this Dahl, I was then able to take it to work for lunch for the next couple of days and like most meals involving spices – it only got better!

Serve with warm Naan bread – delish!

Easy Indian Dahl Soup

What you will need:

  • 2 tablespoons vegan margarine
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • ¼ teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 kg tin of chopped tomatoes, drained
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 ½ cups vegetable stock
  • 1 ¼ cups coconut milk
  • Coriander – chopped
  • Salt & pepper

Naan bread, to serve

Easy Indian Dahl Soup

What to do:

Melt the margarine in a large saucepan. Add the garlic and onion and sauté, stirring for 2-3 minutes.

Add the turmeric, garam masala, chilli powder and cumin and cook for a further 30 seconds.

Stir in the tomatoes, red lentils, lemon juice, vegetable stock and coconut milk and bring to the boil.

Reduce the heat to low and simmer the soup, uncovered, for about 25-30 minutes until the lentils are tender and cooked.

Season to taste with salt and pepper and ladle the soup into a warm tureen

Garnish with chopped coriander and serve with warm Nann bread.

Enjoy! xx

Easy Indian Dahl Soup

Hearty Lentil & Vegetable Cottage Pie

Cottage Pie

This is my first year of living in Melbourne so I’m becoming acquainted with Melbourne weather – Four Seasons in One Day is a saying which is apt indeed! I’ve also been warned that winters here are long – long by Australian standards anyway… it’s almost the end of October and flannelette sheets are still on the bed, flannelette pj’s still rule and winter comfort food is still starring in my kitchen!

So with winter lingering a hearty, warming pie was in order and this Lentil & Vegetable Cottage Pie fits the bill!

What you will need:

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic
1x 400g tin crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs
1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
2 sticks celery – sliced
1 medium carrot, chopped
1 medium zucchini, chopped
Handful or ½ button mushrooms
Spinach leaves (English spinach or regular variety)
1 x 400g tin of brown lentils, drained
1 x 400g tin vegan casserole mince
Salt to taste
Cracked black pepper
3-4 potatoes, washed and chopped (peel if you prefer)
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and chopped
Vegan margarine
Paprika or cayenne pepper

What to do:

In a large cooking pot heat the olive oil and gently sauté the onion until lightly browned. Then add the garlic and celery and gently stir. Next add the tomato paste and the tinned tomatoes and the dried mixed herbs – cook until heated through.

Then add the vegetables to the pot – carrot, zucchini, mushrooms, lentils, vegan casserole mince and lastly the spinach. Cook gently for a few minutes. Season with a little salt (if desired) and cracked pepper.


In a separate saucepan bring water to the boil with the potato and sweet potato and boil until very tender.

Drain your potatoes. Now – bring out the potato masher! Throw in a good dollop of vegan margarine and mash away.

Spoon the lentil/vegetable mixture into a casserole dish. Spread the mashed potatoes on top. You can use a fork to add a little texture to the mashed potato. Sprinkle a little paprika or cayenne pepper over the top.

Pop the casserole dish in a moderate oven and bake at approx 180°C (350°F). for approx 30 minutes or until a little browned on top.

Serve with some lovely steamed broccoli, beans or peas…

Ooooh yes, comfort food at its most comforting!!

Cottage Pie

Vegan Spiced Lentil Biryani


One of my favourite meals has been for many years Biryani and its one of those meals which lends itself easily to a Vegan makeover! With the addition of lentils you are getting your protein hit and I’m thinking chickpeas could also work really well – might have to try them next time.

This recipe, inspired by 500 Vegan Dishes by Deborah Gray is really easy to cook (don’t let the list put you off – once you’ve gathered your basic ingredients you are on your way!) It’s packed with lots of lovely aromatic spices which fill the air AND you can feed a host of peeps on this!

What you will need:

2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 large onion, finely sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2.5 cm (1inch) piece root ginger, shredded
2 teaspoons black mustard seeds
1 red chilli pepper, finely sliced
3 tablespoons madras curry paste
175g (6 oz) each of fresh cauliflower, carrot, green beans, potatoes, cut into chunks
175g (6oz) button mushrooms
200g (7 oz) rinsed brown lentils
1 litre (1 ¾ pints) vegetable stock
175 g frozen peas
Juice of 1- 2 lemons
Large pinch saffron threads
1 teaspoon of turmeric
350 g (12oz) basmati rice, washed
Salt to taste
2-3 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander
150 g (5oz) unsalted roasted cashew nuts
Sultanas or Raisins  – good handful

What to do:

Preheat the oven to 180 C (350 F/Gas mark 4). Heat the oil in a large casserole dish – one that can go from stovetop to oven, then add the onion and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes until the onion is soft. Add the garlic, root ginger, mustard seeds and chilli. Continue to cook, stirring, until the mustard seeds begin to pop. Stir in the curry paste and turmeric. Then add the brown lentils and all the vegetables – stir well to coat.
Pour in the stock and gently bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 mins, until the vegetables are nearly tender. Stir in the peas, lemon juice, saffron and rice, then season to taste with salt. Cover with baking or greaseproof paper, then with a tightly fitting lid  and bake for approx 30 minutes until the rice is tender and the stock is absorbed.

Sprinkle with fresh coriander, cashews and sultanas

Serve with mango chutney, pappadums or Naan bread
Will feed four to six hungry people easily!

Another recipe which proves just how easy being Vegan really is!
Enjoy xx