While in many places it’s snowing and freezing, late winter brings bright sunny weather in Northern California. I had to remind myself that it is winter as I drove around in 65 degree weather today. The excitement of winter is only when we drive up for a few hours to see the snow. After a few rash rains, the doldrums of January bring foggy mornings and warm yet cozy afternoons. The sun stays awake for as long as it can, as the fog gives us the perfect picturesque view on early morning walks. Living in the Bay Area sure has its beautiful moments.
I started writing this post last weekend after a 2 hour hike. The place we hiked is so very beautiful. It shows us a new facet of itself every time we visit. It’s the same hike, but hiking it 3 times in a row looked and felt very different. The first time we went, there was a clear morning orange-blueish sky so clear that you could see far into the horizon. The dogs came with their masters, sniffed us, and gave us a wag. The pictures we took were as clear as a bright morning sky.
The second time we went, the sun decided to play hide and seek. The dizzying heights didn’t bother us a bit. We did not see the sunrise. In fact, we did not even see the clouds. We did not see anything 10 feet away from us. Walking the right path was a question we kept asking each other. The tail end of the hike was when we felt “we walked in the clouds.” We had a white cast on our hair. Some places where we could see clearly were like scenes straight out of a movie.
The third time, we had tiny little droplets touching our eyelashes very subtly. Lightly foggy, not cold, no horses or cows to greet us. It was calm and very serene.
Isn’t it amazing that going to the same place at the exact same time feels so different, yet so familiar? This soup, to me, feels that way. Every time I make it, it’s a bit different. I top it differently, add a number of different vegetables, and it works all the time.
- 2 cups mixed beans(I used sprouted lentils, adzuki and mung beans)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 tomatoes
- 4-5 green chillies
- 1 tbsp fresh grated ginger
- 5 cloves garlic grated
- 1 cup diced carrots
- 1 large bunch of spinach chopped
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- 2 tsp salt or accordingly
- ½ tsp freshly ground pepper
- Boil the lentils/beans in 6 cups of water till it's cooked well, not too soft and too mushy.
- Grind 1 cup of lentils to a coarse paste.
- Grind the tomatoes and green chillies, keep aside.
- In a large deep dish, add olive oil. Add the cumin seeds and bay leaves. Fry for a minute.
- Add the grated ginger, garlic and fry for a minute on low heat.
- Saute the carrots. Add the ground turmeric and add the tomato-green chilly paste. Cook the carrots for 5 minutes. Add the spinach and cook for another 10-15 minutes.
- Add the lentils and mix. Add the lentils paste. Mix everything well, add salt and check for spices, if you need more spice, add some pepper. Simmer for 5 minutes to get all the flavors mixed in well.
You could top it with some Harissa, corn tortilla, sriracha.
You could add some grains in it or serve with some rice.