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Ohio-in-July Vegetable Soup, Indian Style

Recipe by The Spiced Life
Course Soup/Entree
Cuisine Indian
Keyword vegetables
Author TheSpicedLife


  • 2 T grapeseed oil
  • 3 T mustard oil*
  • 1 T panch phoron
  • 1 T dark mustard seeds
  • 5 medium onions, chopped
  • salt to taste
  • 1/3 cup minced garlic
  • 2 T ground coriander
  • 2 t ground cumin
  • 1 t turmeric
  • 1 t paprika, or cayenne for heat
  • 1000 grams chopped new potatoes, red or Yukon Gold (with skin)
  • 5 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 cups water
  • 2/3 cup dried yellow split peas**
  • 2/3 cup split red lentils
  • corn from 4 large ears
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro, divided
  • 1 1/2 T garam masala
  • juice of 1/2 lemon


  1. Heat the grapeseed oil and mustard oil in a large Dutch oven with the mustard seeds and panch phoron seeds on medium high. Cover the pot and let the mustard seeds pop. When they slow down, add the onions and toss with a hefty pinch of salt. Let caramelize, stirring occasionally, until the onions are brown, about 20 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic and toss. Cook for 1 minute. Add the ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric and paprika (or cayenne). Toss and less the spices briefly roast. Then add the potatoes with another hefty pinch of salt. Toss with onions and spices briefly, then add the tomatoes, water, split peas and split lentils. Bring to a boil and then place a lid on the pot, reducing the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Let simmer for 20 minutes.

  3. Add the corn kernels, 1/2 tablespoon of the garam masala and 1/2 cup of the cilantro and return the soup to a simmer. Simmer until the potatoes are fork tender (but not falling apart), and check to make sure the split peas are also tender, about another 20 minutes. Add the remaining 1/2 cup cilantro, the remaining 1 tablespoon of garam masala, and the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Taste for additional salt, garam masala or lemon juice.
  4. *If you have any concerns about using mustard oil, which is only approved by the FDA for external use, please check out this article from New York Times. Clearly it is a personal decision, but I have decided that mustard oil is fine for me and my family.
  5. **If there is a chance your yellow split peas are older, either soak them overnight or par boil them first, to ensure that they will cook within 40-45 minutes of simmering.