Morrocan-Style Cauliflower Red Lentil Soup

This is a bright, summery-tasting soup that will warm you up on a rainy day and is filling enough to be a meal.  

Clean and dice leeks and carrots to make 1 C. of each Saute in 3 T. olive oil in a medium souppot.

Trim the leaves and stems off 1 head of cauliflower.  Cut the cauliflower in half from top to bottom, then place the cut edges down and thinly slice the heads all the way across.  Then cut the cauliflower into very small pieces by slicing the slices crosswise.

Add the cauliflower to the pot and raise the heat.  Season with 1/2 t. salt, 1 t. cumin powder, 1 t. ginger powder, and black and cayenne pepper to your taste.  Stir the cauliflower frequently until it begins to brown — this will take 10-15 minutes.

Mince 2 cloves of garlic and stir into the cauliflower and saute another minute or two.  Then add 12 oz. of diced canned tomatoes and their juices.

Rinse 3/4 C. red lentils and add to the pot along with 1 1/2 C. water and 4 C. vegetable broth.  Bring to a boil and then lower the heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes, until the lentils are soft.

Use a hand blender to puree half or all of the soup, depending on the texture you want.  Add the juice of 1/2 lemon and 1 C. chopped cilantro (optional).

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