This is a really easy, very healthy (almost fat-free) soup with a nice mild flavor and lots of protein.
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 1/3 cups water
2 1/3 cups dried red lentils (masoor dal)
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
5 1/2 to 6 cups chicken broth (low-sodium, fat-free preferred)
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion; saute 3 minutes or until tender. Add turmeric, cumin, chili powder, paprika, salt and pepper; saute 1 minute. Add water, lentils, cilantro, broth and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 1 hour.
Reserve 2 cups lentil mixture. In batches, puree the remaining soup in blender. Put the pureed soup and the reserved mixture back in the Dutch oven and serve. Garnish with chopped fresh tomato and a sprig of cilantro, if desired.