SYRIAN LENTIL SOUP
300g lentils (green or brown)
3 medium onions, finely sliced
3 tbsp olive oil, plus extra to serve
4 cloves of garlic, finely sliced
3 heaped tsp cumin seeds, toasted and ground
a large bunch of fresh coriander (stalks and leaves separated)
1.75 litres cold water
4 tbsp Greek yoghurt
a clove of garlic, crushed salt, juice of a lemon
1. Soak the lentils in a bowl of cold water.
2. Over a moderate heat, cook the onions in the oil for a good 10 minutes. You want them soft.
3. Add the garlic and toasted cumin.
4. Add the coriander stalks and the water, or enough to more than cover the lentil mix. Turn up the heat and bring to the boil. Skim off any froth that surfaces. Turn the temperature down and continue to cook at a moderate bubble for about 30 minutes, watching the water level.
5. While the lentils are cooking, mix the yoghurt with the crushed garlic and a pinch of salt.
6. When the lentils are ready, take them off the heat. You want the individual lentils to be completely squishable between two fingers.
7. Taste the lentils and add salt as needed. Add the lemon juice.
8. Serve the lentils in bowls and to each add a spoonful of seasoned yoghurt, some coriander leaves, a sprinkle of chilli flakes and a spoonful of olive oil.