Recipe: Turmeric-flavoured yellow lentil soup with free-range chicken breast

This warming lentil soup from the kitchens of Constance Le Prince Maurice is delicious and simple to prepare. Perfect for January when you feel like some straight-forward, one-pot cooking.

Constance Le Prince Maurice

Constance Le Prince Maurice

Serves 4
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour

For the soup:

  • 200g yellow split lentils
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 fresh ginger root
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 leek
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 250g boneless, skinless free-range chicken breast
  • 1 level tbsp turmeric
  • 1/2 dried red chilli
  • 2 pinches cumin seeds
  • 2 pinches fennel seeds
  • 1 small stick cinnamon
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 2 sprigs parsley
  • 1.5 litres chicken stock
  • 10cl crème fraîche
  • 40g butter
  • salt and pepper

The tomato chatini:

  • 4 fried croûtons
  • 1 tomato
  • 3 sprigs coriander
  • 1 tbsp olive oil + a little for serving
  • juice of 1/2 lemon

1. Peel and chop the onion, ginger and garlic separately. Clean and finely dice the carrot and leek.
2. In a saucepan, fry the onion in olive oil for 1 minute without colouring. Add ginger, garlic, carrot and leek. Sweat for 3 minutes. Add the chicken breast, yellow lentils, turmeric, fennel and cumin seeds, cinnamon stick, dried chilli, thyme and parsley. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
3. Add chicken stock, salt and pepper. Bring to boil and simmer for 1 hour.
4. Remove the chicken breast, slice it finely. Set aside.
5. Remove the cinnamon stick, blend the soup, rub it through a fine sieve, add crème fraîche and butter. Correct seasoning.
6. Prepare the chatini: cut the tomatoes into quarters, seed them and cut them into julienne strips. Chop the coriander leaves.
7. Mix the julienned tomato, chopped coriander, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Spread this onto the croûtons.
8. Place a small mound of the sliced chicken in the middle of each soup plate. Pour the hot soup onto it and top the chicken with one chatini croûton. Finish with a think streak of olive oil and serve.

Alternative ingredients:

You can also replace the chicken stock with water or vegetable stock, and substitute red lentils for yellow lentils. In a typical creole meal, lentils are served alongside rice.

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