Curried Corn & Quinoa Chowder with Carrots and Red Lentils

By on October 14, 2014
Curried Corn & Quinoa Chowder with carrots and red lentils

This post is long, long overdue. Seriously, I meant to write this post last fall, because it’s a very fall recipe. Whoopsies. When I finally made the time to write it, it was summer, and I really didn’t think anyone wanted to read about this delicious, hearty, warm, and perfectly spicy soup in the dead heat of summer. Just didn’t sound appetizing. Soups are for fall and winter, not summer. So I had to wait. And wait. And wait until October rolled around this year and it’s STILL 80 degrees here in Santa Monica. What gives, weather?! Anyway, I can’t wait any longer, and since it’s officially fall anyway, I’ve decided to go ahead and share this glorious soup recipe with the rest of the world, where it might be cooling down already. What do you guys think, is soup for fall & winter, or do you eat it in summer?

This soup is really very simple to make and it’s extra fun because you get to use a blender for part of it. It’s rich, thick and absolutely delicious. It’s got some coconut milk in it which makes it nice n’ creamy, and when you blend some of the carrots and red lentils it really thickens up the soup. This is why I call it a chowder, since it’s rich, creamy and thick. Ugh, soup doesn’t get any better than this, guys. It’s a flavor explosion. Enjoy!

What You’ll Need:

About 45 minutes of time

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 yellow onion (roughly chopped into small pieces)

3 cloves garlic chopped finely

4-5 medium/large carrots (roughly chopped into small pieces)

3 tbsp yellow curry powder (if your curry powder already has cayenne in it then leave out the cayenne that I add unless you like it extra spicy!)

2 tbsp chili powder

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp cumin

1 1/4 cup red lentils + 1/4 cup red lentils (separated)

2 tbsp minced ginger (it’s easiest to mince ginger when it’s frozen!)

6 cups chicken broth (or veggie broth for vegans & vegetarians)

1 cup water

1 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

1 cup dry quinoa

1 1/4 cup frozen sweet corn (sweet corn, not regular, it makes a difference!)

1/2 cup coconut milk

a handful of chopped cilantro

Curried Corn & Quinoa Chowder with carrots and red lentils

What You’ll Do:

Heat the olive oil in a big pot on medium heat. Add the chopped onions, carrots, and garlic and mix well.

 Curried Corn & Quinoa Chowder with carrots and red lentils

Sauté for 3 minutes then add the curry powder, chili powder, and cumin and stir until mixed well for another minute. Add the 1 1/4 cup of red lentils and mix well.

Curried Corn & Quinoa Chowder with carrots and red lentils

Add the ginger, chicken broth, and water and stir well so nothing sticks to the bottom. Turn the heat to high, cover the pot, and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for about 10-15 minutes until the lentils are no longer hard (scoop up a few lentils and taste test!).  This is easily a vegan soup if you change the chicken broth to your favorite veggie broth!

 

Start cooking the quinoa in a separate pot by toasting the quinoa on medium heat for a minute. Add 2 cups of water to the pot and bring to a boil then simmer uncovered on low heat for about 10-12 minutes. Don’t let the quinoa overcook and get mushy. If the quinoa grain has sprouted, stop cooking and pour out any remaining water from the pot. Leave in the pot to steam until the next step.

 

While the quinoa is cooking, scoop out about half the soup and add it to your blender. Add the almond milk and blend on high for 10 seconds. Pour the mixture back into the pot and stir well. The soup turns more orangey once you blend the carrots!

Curried Corn & Quinoa Chowder with carrots and red lentils

Add the remaining 1/4 cup of red lentils to the pot and stir. Turn heat to high and let simmer for 5 min then turn heat to low. Add the salt, pepper, cream and frozen corn and mix well. Add the cooked quinoa and stir. Add the cilantro and stir in for another minute. Let sit for another 5 min and then serve!

The longer you let it sit, the thicker it will get since the quinoa and lentils will absorb more broth. You can put leftovers in tupperware and add a little more chicken broth the next day when you heat it up if you want it to thin out a little. I usually do 🙂

Curried Corn & Quinoa Chowder with carrots and red lentils

 

Ok, please make this and let me know what you think! I usually make this almost once a week because my boyfriend & I can’t get enough of it. He fights me for the leftovers. Enjoy fall everyone!

 

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