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Arabic Lentil Soup

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 white onion
1 carrot, diced
3 garlic cloves
1 cup brown lentils (also called black)
6 cups chicken broth (or 6 cups of water and 2 bullion cubes)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
salt and pepper to taste
grated carrot and cilantro for topping, optional

Fried Onion:

1 small white onion, sliced thinly
1/2 cup sunflower oil


1. In a food processor add onion and garlic, pulse until mixture is gently chopped. In a 1/2 quart saucepan on medium heat add olive oil and allow to heat up for 3 minutes. Add onion and garlic mixture, stir and allow to cook until tender about 3 minutes.

2. Add carrot slices and cumin, allow to cook for about 20 seconds. Add chicken broth then bring heat to a full boil. Carefully add lentils, reduce heat to low and cover. Allow to simmer for 35 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan on medium heat add sunflower oil. Allow to get hot for 3 minutes. Carefully add onion slices and allow to cook until brown about 5 minutes. Sit aside on a paper towel.

4. Remove lid from lentils and add salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, stir. With a stick blender blend about half of mixture (not all should be blended). In a serving bowl add lentil soup then top each bowl with fried onions, grated carrots and cilantro.

Yields: 4 servings

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