Indian spiced tomato and coconut soup with rice
( SERVES 6 )
Photo by Tam West
This is a thick hearty soup which is a bit like an Indian flavoured risotto. It will also do duty as a lunch dish with a salad. If you have some leftover rice use it instead of cooking it fresh. You would need ¾ of a cup of cooked rice. This soup will thicken as it sits. I like it both thick or thinner but if you want it thinner add the rice to it just before serving. For a vegetarian three course dinner, follow this soup with my braised saffron cauliflower salad and biancomangiare and apple and rhubarb compote.
|¼ cup||Jasmine rice|
|6 Tbsp||Vegetable oil|
|2||Onions, finely chopped|
|2 Tbsp||Cumin seeds, toasted in a dry pan over moderate heat until fragrant and just darkening in colour|
|½ tsp||Fenugreek seeds|
|½ tsp||Freshly ground black pepper|
|3 Tbsp||Ginger, finely chopped|
|6 cloves||Garlic, finely chopped|
|1 pinch||Chilli flakes|
|1 tsp||Ground turmeric|
|2 cans||Chopped tomatoes, approx. 800g|
|400 ml||Coconut cream|
|1 small handful||Curry leaves|
|1 Tbsp||Coriander seeds|
|1||Red chilli, thinly sliced|
|1 Tbsp||Sesame seeds|
|1 small handful||Coriander leaves, chopped|
- Use a rice cooker to cook the rice or place the rice into a saucepan and add enough water to come 1 ½ cm above the level of the rice. Bring to a rolling boil then move to your smallest stove element, cover and turn the heat to the lowest setting. Cook without uncovering for any reason for 20 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and without uncovering, allow to stand for 5 minutes. Uncover and gently fluff up the rice with a fork but don’t mash the rice grains. Cool and reserve.
- Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil in a wide saucepan over moderate heat and add the onions, cumin and fenugreek seeds, the pepper, ginger, garlic, zest, cinnamon stick and chilli flakes.
- Fry gently, without browning, for 10 minutes or until the onion is soft.
- Add the turmeric, tomatoes and water and mix well. Bring to the boil and simmer 10 minutes.
- Stir in the cooked rice and coconut cream, mix well and simmer 2 minutes. Taste and season with salt. Keep warm.
- When ready to serve heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil in a frying pan over moderate to high heat and add the curry leaves, coriander seeds, red chilli and sesame seeds. Fry until the curry leaves are crisp and the seeds browned but not burnt. Spoon a little of this mixture and some chopped coriander over the soup when you serve it.