School Lunchbox Menu: Spiced carrot and lentil soup, hummous and Arabic bread

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Some mornings, I play a game with myself, pretending to be in Chopped or Masterchef – limited time, but with a whole menu to produce + breakfast, (pathetic, I know… but it does inject a sense of excitement to my mornings…) This was one of those mornings. I woke-up at 5.45 am, and by the time I got myself to the kitchen, it was 6 am. There was bread to be made from scratch, soup to prepare, hummous and breakfast items as well. Took a deep breath prepared stuff in order of time needed – bread has to rise first, so I mixed the dough in the mixer and left it to be kneaded. Boiled lentils with vegetable stock, prepared carrots etc. Put dough to rest. Prepared hummous. Made breakfast and soup at the same time. Set table. Whizzed soup in blender. Rolled out dough (it had only 40 minutes to rise this morning…sigh) Grilled bread. Served breakfast, packed lunch. Done – hands up in the air! 60 minutes up!

OK, presentation could have been better for the hummous, however the soup is the nicest soup I have ever tasted. The creaminess from the lentils marry well with the sweetness of the carrots, cumin just enhances the richness of the mixture and the pinch of chilli flakes gives a little tingle on the tongue – not much.. just a teeny, tiny heat that announces its presence. Try making this soup – I highly recommend it. Dear son and hubby each had a big bowl for breakfast – the aroma is just irresistable.

Spiced Carrot and Lentil Soup (adapted from BBC Good Food)

Ready for blender

Ready for the blender

  • 2 tsp cumin
  • a pinch of chilli flakes
  • 600 gms carrots – grated and chopped coarsely
  • 1/2 cup lentils
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 liter stock (vegetable or chicken)
  • 1/2 cup milk

Method:

  1. Dry fry cumin to release its flavours
  2. Place lentils and vegetable stock in a pot, boil till softened (about 20 minutes)
  3. Add chopped carrots, 1/2 of cumin, chilli flakes, olive oil, milk – cook till carrots are tender.
  4. Blend fine – add milk if too thick, sprinkle leftover cumin on top of soup prior to serving.

Hummous (Adapted from Arabicbites)

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  • 1 can (410 gms) chickpeas
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • pinch of salt

Put all items in food processor and whizz till smooth.

Arabic Bread (flat bread) from Arabicbites

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup wholemeal flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup warm water
  1. Put all ingredients in a mixer bowl. Let mixer knead dough for 10 minutes.
  2. Let dough rise in warm place between 50 – 90 minutes.
  3. Gently punch dough, divide into 16 balls. Roll out in circles.
  4. Heat grill pan – grill bread 1 minute per side.
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About mumstech
Retired at 40 after working in various industries including banking and financial services, oil and gas as well as higher education.Now a stay-at-home mum, cheerleader for husband and son, cleaner, nutritionist, cook, laundry lady, driver, clerk cum administration assistant, public relations, personal assistant... I never knew that squeaky clean floors can give me such satisfaction!

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