There is such a thing as a free lunch: spiced lentil and spinach soup

Serves: 5

Cooking time: 20-30 minutes

Ingredients:

Four spring onions finely chopped

Half a shallot finely chopped

One green pepper finely chopped

Half an inch of fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped

Three cloves of garlic finely chopped

350g red lentils

100g frozen spinach

Sunflower oil

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp garam masala

Quarter of a bunch of coriander (stalks and all), chopped

1 vegetable stock cube

Defrost the spinach (microwave on defrost setting for 10 minutes should do the trick).

In a large saucepan, fry the ginger, garlic, pepper, shallot and onions in a little oil on a medium heat until soft and golden.

Stir in the lentils and cover with boiling water – top up until about an inch above the lentils. Crumble in the stock cube and simmer gently for about 15 minutes until the lentils are soft. Add more boiling water if necessary.

Stir in the spinach, coriander and spices and simmer for a further five minutes. Season to taste.

To store: allow to cool, divide into individual portions and keep in the fridge or freezer – I usually use a jam jar or takeaway tub.

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