Jane’s Brazilian Buddhist Retreat Lentil Soup

Before Mark and I got married, I had a kitchen tea. But since we’d already been cohabiting for a while (and I’d had my own kitchen for years), we had no need for “stuff”. Instead, I asked friends to cook their favourite vegetarian dish, and bring me the recipe. We ate the yummy food, and Miriam put the recipes into a big folder for me to keep.

It was a gorgeous day, and I wish I had photos to show you now.

What I do have for you now is a superb recipe. I didn’t get around to cooking this until a few weeks ago, and I went through a period of mourning the years that I lived without this soup.

Jane learned the recipe from the monks at a Buddhist retreat that she went to when she was living in Brazil. Just what you need after a hard days meditation.

It’s easy (super, amazingly easy) to cook, and has such a wallop of deliciously distinctive flavour that you won’t be able to stop at one bowl.

500gm Red Lentils
3.5 Litres Water (I use a little less)
1 Onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves of Garlic, roughly chopped

7 Tblspns Sesame Seeds
1 Tblspn Salt

Chuck first 4 ingredients in a pot. Simmer till lentils turn to mush. Blend with a bamix to make a smooth consistency.

Dry fry sesame seeds over a medium heat, stirring constantly to avoid burning. You want the seeds to change colour, but it doesn’t have to be a big colour change.

Grind sesame seeds and salt – to be proper authentic you’d do this in a big stone mortar and pestle, but my shoulder gave in and I did it in a food processor. It still tasted good.

Stir sesame mix into lentil goop.

Serve with a garnish of fresh chopped continental parsley if desired.

This recipe freezes well, and is thick and hearty enough for a meal on its own.

2 thoughts on “Jane’s Brazilian Buddhist Retreat Lentil Soup”

  1. Thank you for the recipe. I will have to try it. I am trying to convert Chris to be a lentil-eater as both Alex and I like lentils.

    I wonder whether this will work with chickpeas instead of lentils…


  2. Cool! I haven’t got to keep the space in my brain for the recipe – and I was needing it for other stuff – I can just come here to find it!



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