Roasted pepper and red lentil soup

I couldn’t decide which to post..the lentil soup or lentil salad. The weather here in France finally decided for me. The trees are in bud, the tulips are in bloom, the daffodils are nodding their heads and the strawberries are sweet. But we still take to the streets with our coats and scarves en walk head first into the wind. I’m not complaining…like my wine maker neighbor says; “C’est normal”. It gives me a little longer to enjoy a bowl of soup, easy and quick and filling.


Roasted pepper and red lentil soup

  • 2 red peppers
  • 200 g red lentils
  • 500 ml vegetable stock
  • red wine vinegar
  • 1 onion
  • olive oil
  • parmesan cheese
  • parsley/coriander
  • 2 bay leaves
  • tablespoon red pesto
  • salt and pepper
  1. Remove the seeds from the peppers, cut into strips and place in an oven pan, drizzle with olive oil. Roast at 200 degrees C for 30 minutes or until tender.
  2. Sauté the chopped onion in some oilive oil until tranlucent, add the vegetable stock, lentils and the two bayleaves and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the lentils are tender. Add the peppers and simmer for another 5 minutes.
  3. Let it cool down, remove the bay leaves  and puree with a handmixer until smooth and creamy. You can also press it through a fine sieve if you want it smoother.
  4. Taste for salt and pepper, add some red wine vingear for a little tartness and I add a tablespoon of red pesto for flavour.
  5. Serve with shaved parmesan and decorate with some parsley or coriandre leaves.
  6. Optional: Stir in some cream for a richer version.
  7. Alternative: The peppers can be halved, then roasted with the skin side up and the skin can be easily peeled off after roasting.


  • You can try and add more, or larger red peppers and lessen the red lentils. You can add up to 4 or 5 large red peppers. Add a little bit more stock if it gets too thick.
  • Don’t overcook the lentils, cook them until just tender.
  • Instead of the red pesto, which is usually a sundried tomato paste, use only a heaped TBSP  concentrated tomato paste or even more, to add color to the soup.
  • Add some chopped ripe red tomatoes or a small can of chopped tomatoes to make it more liquid.
  • If you don’t like thick  soups, try the following recipe where nothing is blended:                                                                     Red lentil, carrot and pancetta soup… just add the red pepper and leave out the carrot or play around with the recipe.

Serves 6

This is an entry for WTSIM, hosted by Jeanne at cooksister.


Colette’s pear salad

I’ve been treated to many delicious meals during our visit in SA, of which this pear salad is one. My good friend Colette, whipped this up one hot afternoon after coming back from our “hunt for all things old”.


Colette’s pear salad

  • 2 firm pears
  • mixed salad leaves
  • handful of peppery rocket leaves
  • walnuts
  • parmesan cheese
  • butter
  • brown sugar
  • white balsamic vinegar
  • lemon juice
  1. Wash and cut the pears into eight parts.
  2. Heat some butter with a spoonful of sugar in a pan, add the pears and sauté over high heat until nicely caramelized.
  3. Spoon into a dish and leave aside. Add the walnuts to the same pan and brown quickly over high heat. Set aside
  4. Deglaze the pan with some white balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and a pinch of salt.
  5. Arrange the salad leaves on 2 plates, spoon the hot pears on the salad and sprinkle the walnuts. Spoon the deglazed pansauce over the salad and finish off with some shaved parmesan cheese, a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkling of pepper.
  6. For a more substantial meal: Add some crisp fried parma ham/bacon, or goats cheese, or some flaked white fish to the salad.

                                                        Serves two

Finish off this late afternoon meal, much later, with tea and a freshly baked cupcake that you’ve bought on your way home at the sweet deli just around the corner.