For a great flavour without the heat use a mild curry powder, but if you’re partial to a bit of spice use a medium to hot blend. Red lentils are available from supermarkets and Asian food stores.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 tablespoon black or yellow mustard seeds
2 teaspoons Madras curry powder
1 x 400 gram tin crushed Italian tomatoes
400 grams kumara, peeled and diced 2 cm pieces
2 apples, peeled, cored and diced 2 cm pieces
½ cup coconut cream
4 cups chicken stock
¾ cup red lentils
¼ cup chopped coriander plus extra for garnish
½ cup long thread coconut, toasted
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the onion, carrot and garlic with a good pinch of salt, cover and cook gently until the vegetables are tender.
Add the ginger, mustard seeds and curry powder and cook for 2 minutes. Add a splash of water if the pan is dry.
Add the remaining ingredients, season and simmer, partially covered, for 20-25 minutes until the kumara is tender.
To serve: Stir the chopped coriander into the soup and ladle into warm bowls. Top with a drizzle of coconut cream, toasted coconut and coriander. Makes about 8 cups of soup.