Mulligatawny Soup

This family favorite British-Indian fusion soup is filled with fragrant curry spices, creamy red lentils, sweet apples, carrots, and rice. It is so satisfying as colder temperatures bring us indoors! I recommend that you double the recipe so you have leftovers to freeze. Serves 6.


½ teaspoon mustard seeds

½ teaspoon cumin seeds

½ teaspoon coriander seeds

1 cup onion, diced

¾ cup of carrot, diced

½ cup celery, diced

3-4 cloves garlic, minced

1 inch ginger root, minced

1 apple, peeled and diced

2 small tomatoes, diced

4 cups water or vegetable stock

1 teaspoon curry powder

¼ teaspoon red chili powder

½ teaspoon black pepper

1 cup red lentils

½ cup light coconut milk (optional)

1½ cup basmati rice, cooked

1 cup water

1 tablespoon lemon juice

½ teaspoon salt-free seasoning


¼ cup cilantro, chopped

¼ cup scallions, chopped

  1. Place the mustard, cumin, and coriander seeds in a sauté pan. Toast the seeds for 2-3 minutes or until they start to become fragrant. Transfer to a pestle and mortar. Process until fine.
  2. Add the onion to a soup pot and sauté for 4-5 minutes using a splash of water if the onions start to stick to the pot.
  3. Add the carrot, celery, garlic, ginger root, and apple to the pot. Sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add the tomatoes, vegetable stock, curry powder, chili powder, pepper, red lentils, and the toasted spices from step 1. Bring the pot to a boil, then lower temperature to a simmer. Cover and cook for 15 minutes.
  5. Add the coconut milk (if using – no need to replace if not), cooked rice, water, lemon juice, and seasoning. Simmer for 3-4 minutes. Adjust the seasoning. Serve with a garnish of cilantro and scallions.

NOTE: For a smoother, creamier soup, you can blend half of it and then return it to the pot. You can also use an immersion blender to blend some of the soup.