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Another old standby.... I can count on this recipe when I'm stumped about what to make. It's hearty and flavorful, filled with fiber and protein. It's also cholesterol-free!

This can be made as is or spiced up even more. Personally, we love spicy food in this family, so I fire it up by adding a spoonful of Indian red curry paste. But it's just as tasty as is.

Red lentils are sometimes called Indian dals. They aren't too hard to find, especially at Indian or Middle Eastern markets. I've seen them sometimes in the international section of grocery stores. Green lentils could be used in a pinch, but the red lentils really make the recipe unique.

The garam masala is a very special Indian spice mixture that is necessary for the dish. This can also be found at most Indian markets or sometimes the gourmet section of grocery stores.

Don't feel tied to the exact amounts and types of beans in the recipe; I unusually just throw in whatever I have in my pantry. I'd stick to the "white" beans, though.

Serve with warm pita.

I got this recipe off of Allrecipes.com and added some modifications.

Come find more delicious recipes at That's Damn Good!

Moroccan Lentil Soup
Serves 6

2 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger (don't use dried)
6 cups water or veggie broth
1 cup red lentils
1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained
1 19-ounce cannellini beans (white kidney beans), drained
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup diced carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 large yukon potato, diced (or any type of potatoes you have on hand)
2 teaspoon garam masala
3/4 teaspoons ground cardamom
1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (add red curry paste for added spice)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt to taste (start with 1 teaspoon)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 bunch cilantro, sliced thin crosswise (optional)

1. In a large pot, sauté the onions, garlic and ginger in a little olive oil for about 5 minutes.

2. Add water or broth, lentils, chick peas, white kidney beans, tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, celery, garam masala, cardamom, cayenne pepper and cumin. Bring to a boil for a few minutes, and then simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours or longer, until lentils are soft.

3. Puree half the soup in a food processor or blender and stir into soup (optional step).

4. Top with cilantro (optional).

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