Spiced Tomato and Lentil Soup with Fried Halloumi

Serves 2-3 
So, my camera is broken. I need to get it fixed, but for the time-being I am too scared to find out how much repairs will be. Instead, I’m sticking my head in the sand and trying to make do with my phone camera. I am a massive fan of Nigel Slater, and the photographs in his diary-style cookbooks aren’t the sharpest quality, but look almost more homely, appetising and comforting because of this. Maybe it’s the 90s child nostalgia of flipping through a cookbook where the photos aren’t fantastic quality and overexposed. They simply are they way you picked them up from the shops, wrapped in that flimsy paper envelope with the negatives in the back. 
This recipe seems to fit well with the same nostalgic, comforting feel. I am over the warm London weather. Some how I am actually missing the rainy, grey skies and the need for a duvet. The fan noise is starting get old. I want lentil soups and hearty stews. 
Recipe
1 small onion (red or yellow), minced
1 tbsp of curry powder 
1/4 tsp of cardamom 
1 large jar of tomato sauce, about 750ml 
125g of halloumi 
120g of lentils 
250ml of vegetable stock 
salt and pepper to taste
Preparation 
  1. Wash the lentils thoroughly, cover with water and bring to a boil. 
  2. Cook until al dente, you want them to retain a nice bite. This should take approximately 15 minutes. Once done, set aside. 
  3. Meanwhile in a moderate sized pot, fry the minced onion in a generous glug of oil on a medium heat. 
  4. Once golden brown (about 5-10 minutes), add the curry powder and cardamom. 
  5. Coat the onion in the spices, then add the tomato sauce and vegetable stock. Bring to a steady simmer, season to taste. Avoid over-salting as the halloumi will be salty! Once warmed through, cover whilst you fry the halloumi. 
  6. Cut the halloumi into 2 cm cubes, fry on a medium high heat until golden brown on both sides. 
  7. Simple plate up by layering the soup on top of the lentils and finally topping with the fried halloumi. For garnish, spinach or fresh coriander would be lovely. 
  8. Enjoy! 

This recipe was inspired by a fantastic recipe by Naturally Ella.

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