Hubby's Crockpot Middle Eastern Spicy Lentil Soup

I love cooking soup in the crockpot. Here is a drool worthy lentil soup recipe that is tasty and healthy.

My dear husband wanted to cook for me.  He wanted to show his two teen daughters and tween daughter that he can cook, if he has too! So last week he gave me his list to buy at the store.  He wanted to do it on his own with no assistance.  I did send the girls in the kitchen to take some pictures so that I could BLOG about his meal!
slow cooker lentil soup

My Guest Chef, Mark, started at 10:30 pm and an hour later the food was cooking in the crockpot.  We had to smell this all night long.  He wanted the soup to be ready by 11am the next day so the smart guy knew that it had to be started the night before.

He made a spicy lentil soup and a  side Greek salad.  We served it with my Ooooey Gooey Onion Cheese Bread (click to get recipe). It was very tasty!  We even had friends over for lunch.  They also loved it!

 This soup has a nice Middle Eastern flavor. Serves 8-12

Spicy Lentil Soup (click for a printable copy)

2 T. olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 medium carrot, minced
1- 20 oz can whole tomatoes, undrained, chopped
3 c. dried brown lentils, rinsed and picked over for stems and rocks
1 tsp. ground cumin
3/4 tsp. ground coriander
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Lg pinch of saffron (pieces or powder- we used pieces)
1/3 c. chopped fresh cilantro
Plain yogurt for serving

1.  In a lg skillet, heat the olive oil over med. heat.  Add onions, celery and carrots and cook, stirring a few times, until just softened, about 5 minutes.  Place in the slow cooker, along with the tomatoes and their juice, lentils, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and lemon juice.  Add water to come about 3 inches above the vegetables.  Cover and cook on LOW for 7-9 hours.

2.  Season with salt and pepper and stir in the saffron and cilantro.  Add water to thin the soup if it is too thick.  Ladle into serving bowls and serve hot, topped with a dollop of yogurt.

Here are pictures of his journey!
soup recipes

These last two pictures are of the Saffron threads.  You could use powder or the threads. Our store only  had the threads.  Did you know that this stuff runs almost $300 for ONE OUNCE???? We bought .06 oz! We only used a large pinch.  We will need to make some more saffron recipes to get the most out of our buy!  So if you have any yummy saffron recipes please share! 

We at this with a yummy Greek salad. It was Romaine Letttuce, chopped.  Toss with Feta cheese, Kalamata Olives and grape tomatoes.  The dressing was a quick mixture of lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.

So, Mark, when and what is your next meal???? Your hungry fans want to know!
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