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Orange-Scented Lentil Soup #FrenchFridayswithDorie

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Gosh, this recipe for Orange-Scented Lentil Soup came at a perfect time. After a mild December, we’ve had plenty of sub-normal temps, and precipitation ranging from freezing rain to sleet to snow. A steaming bowl of hearty soup was the ideal way to warm  me from the inside out, and Dorie’s lentil soup sure hit the spot. Her additions of orange peel, cloves, coriander seeds and ginger gave subtle undertones to the flavor without overwhelming the overall taste. It could easily be made vegetarian by swapping out the chicken broth for veggie broth and eliminating the bacon garnish. I pureed some of my batch, and left the rest chunky. My preference was for the latter…but both versions were outstanding. I think the hubby would have liked this one, too, not too different from his favorite split pea soup…but when he heard “lentils,” the deal was off.

Yellow onions, celery and carrots were sautéd till tender before chicken broth, lentils du Puy (French green lentils) and the seasonings (a strip of orange zest, pepper corns, coriander seeds, one clove, coarsely grated ginger, salt and pepper) were added. My pot of soup simmered for about an hour till the lentils were tender. Then you have the option of pureeing your soup or leaving as is. I had some creme fraiche left in the fridge so a nice dollop with some crispy bacon strips made for a delectable garnish. Details of this recipe can be found in Dorie Greenspan’s cookbook, Around My French Table.


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42 comments on “Orange-Scented Lentil Soup #FrenchFridayswithDorie”

  1. Your soup looks very good. I am encouraged to give it a go by your review – when I get time!

  2. My vote is for the whole lentils. And it looks much nicer too. Beautiful soup Liz! The bowls are perfect. And may I say your husband is the pickiest eater in that house? jaja
    Have a great weekend!

  3. Happy Friday, Liz! I love lentils, orange anything, and this fantastic soup!!! Love the soup and your photos!

  4. I like the look of this un-puréed too! Need to try that next time. I am a huge fan of this one! Happy weekend!

  5. You sure prettied up one ugly soup 🙂 (I thought mine was ugly – yours is totally not ugly) – bacon and creme fraiche are perfect garnishes.

    have a great weekend.

  6. I liked the chunky version also, Liz. I wasn’t bothered by the color of the soup but your table cloth/place mat picture combo actually made the soup look quite pretty. The carrot slices helped also. There you go propping up the creme fraiche dollop again with a orange slice. My Greek yogurt did a “sink” again, especially when I loaded it with fresh pineapple bits but I couldn’t come up with a clever anchor. A pineapple slice, duh????? Keep giving me tips and I will eventually get there…….

  7. I applaud you Liz, having such a picky adult eater in the house and you still forge onward with these delightful out of the box recipe. Orange zest, cloves, coriander and ginger are certainly unusual pairings for lentils. I am surprised you used the lentils du Puy, which are famous for keeping their shape, I would think ordinary lentils might lend themselves to a creamy soup a bit better (they are also ridiculously expensive here).

  8. I did not puree; yours is beautiful each way. With such lovely garnishes your photos are really great. Even though it is HOT here today, your photos make me want more soup.

  9. You’re like my sister, she prefers her soups chunky too.

    Lately I prefer the pureed versions because somedays I’m just too lazy to chew and just want to drink without any obstacles.

  10. Delicious flavors, I like the un-pureed version as well…I’m a big fan of soups with texture!

  11. Liz, two very lovely versions of this hearty Orange-Scented Lentil Soup – I also opted not to purée the soup and all the taste testers actually liked this one. Your soup looks very lovely in these very pretty white soup bowls of yours.
    Have a good weekend!

  12. Mmmm.. Your pictures make this look amazing Liz! I can’t wait to make it!

  13. I paused before pureeing mine and almost the skipped the step as well. But then I remembered that I had a big ole piece of orange zest in there that needed to be incorporated into the soup, and that meant it needed to be pureed. Both of your versions look delicious.

  14. I love the look of your unpureed soup! Next time I will not puree. We are having a little extra winter here, too, so the soup was just right.

  15. I wish I had remembered my creme fraiches that was sitting in the fridge. The soup looks so much more appealing unpureed.

  16. Well, I very recently prepared lentil soup obviously without orange. These look Yumm and would love to add the flavor next time I do.

  17. The perfect early spring soup, a warming lentil soup with a light citrus kick on top of the other spices.

  18. Both soups look great, but I think I’d go for the creamy one 🙂

  19. We’re both in the soup mood today! This one sounds delicious, that orange addition is unique but sounds wonderful!

  20. French green lentils are amazing in just about anything. Love the addition of orange!

  21. Lizzy, You are the queen of garnishes! You always make everything look so pretty, even lentil soup! We really enjoyed this one…even Bill liked it!

  22. This looks fabulous Liz and it’s been so cold here as well. I’m sure the family loved this heart warming soup.

  23. I love the orange slice garnish. It adds nice color to the soup. Nothing warms you up better than a nice hot bowl of soup. I enjoyed this soup as well and will be making it again. Have a nice weekend.

  24. It’s so interesting that texture was such a big thing this time around. I think it looks great both ways! And that slice of orange on the pureed batch just seals the deal – looks fantastic!

  25. I hope you get a big commission Liz because I am now seriously contemplating buying Around My French Table.

    My husband’s favorite soup of all time is split pea soup. (His mother was a fabulous cook.) Your lovely vegetarian style take on lentil soup could be a very close favorite. Love your idea of the crème fraíche garnish, too.

  26. Sending some warm thoughts your way and hoping that mother nature cooperates soon. Love this heat you up from the inside out soup. I so need to get a copy of Dories recipe book. I am so missing out!!!

  27. I love that soup! We make something similar, and it is one of our favorites this time of year.

  28. Orange and lentils? What an unusual, intriguing combination! I love it and must try it one day. Thank you for inspiration.

  29. Wow, that sounds awesome for a cold day. Believe it or not on our mountain in the tropical jungle, even during the dry season, we’re very cool (20 to 22 deg. C but feels cooler with the wind, especially at night) and have been for over a month. It’s hot and like summer in the city though. Amazing contrast. Have a good weekend, Lizzy!

  30. looks wonderful and I love lentil soup, but if the only way to get the recipe is to buy the book, then I’m out. Just had to get rid of several hundred cookbooks because I no longer have the room.

    • If you google Orange-Scented Lentil soup, you should come up with the recipe. The publisher has asked us not to share unless it was printed by Dorie or in a newspaper, etc. But most of the recipes can be found somewhere with a little hunting.

  31. I’m with you for whole lentils not puréed. The soup sounds delicious especiallywith the bit of orange and dollop of Creme fraiche with strands of bacon on top. Very nice review!

  32. Both soups look great but I think I prefer whole lentils too. Tricia and I are so excited about going
    to Seattle and finally getting to meet some of the Doristas. It should be fun. Have a great weekend.

  33. It would be great to have your soup right now. Sometimes I just can’t understand Colorado weather. So sunny and hot yesterday and today it is so cold and cloudy!!!

    I found this combination so creative, I can see how the citrus will add a refreshing taste in the soup. Love to try unusual combinations. “Thinking or living” outside of the box is always an adventure:)

  34. What a comforting soup! I never thought to put orange into soup… but I can see it working well with all the yummy lentils. 🙂

  35. I didn’t really think of this as ugly, but your garnishes do look great, especially the carrot slices. Sorry Bill wouldn’t try this one, but we both know how husbands can be about their food.

  36. I love anything with lentils, especially soups! That would be my perfect lunch!

  37. I think next time I make this I will leave my lentils whole…I like texture in my soup! Love the look of yours!

  38. Two soups, two thumbs up!

  39. Lizzy,
    I love lentil soup. I would prefer the chunky version better too.

  40. So fun to see the compare and contrast – kudos to you for preparing it both ways ! I have been into soup as well lately- mostly due to the weather, but added with a few FFWD soup weeks and then the colds that have been cycling through the house 🙂 This was a wonderful addition and reminded me to get those wonderful lentils back into rotation. Love your presentation- that dish with the orange slice is stunning !

  41. this looks delicious, Lizzy. We love lentil soup and it seldom occurs to me to make something other than our old favorites. I like the texture of the soup so usually don’t puree it. Gosh, that sounds good.

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