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Spicy Red Lentil, Coriander & Coconut Soup with Chicken Dumplings

That’s the sickbed, to be specific. There’s only one thing worse than being all alone on a holiday weekend. Being sick and alone on a holiday weekend. That really stinks. For the past couple of days, I’ve been fighting off some nasty bug. So, I decided to pull the plug on my trip to see my family in Virginia for Thanksgiving.

This means no turkey, no stuffing, no Dad’s mashed potatoes, no pie, and none of the other treats that go along with that day. Oh, yeah, and no family either, which is a shame as some of my relatives whom I haven’t seen in a while were going to be at my folks’ house. Instead, I got to eat chicken soup, lots of soup, along with cold medicine and fluids.

A few months ago, when there were still lots of summer vegetables at the Greenmarket, I made a batch of one of my favorite soups to keep on hand. Peter Gordon’s Spicy Red Lentil, Coriander & Coconut Soup with Chicken Dumplings* is definitely not your grandmother’s chicken soup. Heck, it’s not my mother’s or my grandmother’s chicken soup.

Although the title says “spicy,” it is not hot in the sinus-clearing kind of way. Rather, it has layers of flavor from spices, vegetables, broth, and coconut milk, along with citrusy backnotes. It is comfort food for a different palate. It is light and hearty at the same time. The other plus is that it freezes well, so I can make it when inspiration hits and then keep it on hand for when I feel under the weather or for when I feel like I need a bowl of something warm and comforting.

Buon appetito e buona festa!

*I tried to find an on-line version of this recipe, but couldn’t locate it. I recommend tracking it down in his Sugar Club Cookbook, which I saw for sale on eBay for under $10.00. I was fortunate enough to be able to eat at that restaurant when I lived in London many years ago and had one of the top two vegetarian meals I’ve ever eaten.

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