The entire time I was making this soup, all I could think of was the Seinfeld episode in which the Soup Nazi appears. Mulligatawny is only one of the secret recipes Elaine finds in the bureau (Kramer’s favorite), but that’s the one that has always stood out for me, due to its incredibly fun name — and because that’s the recipe that finally breaks the Soup Nazi’s spirit.
Compared to most of the Indian dishes I’ve tried before, this recipe has comparatively few spices. It’s just curry and ginger, coupled with carrots, apple, cilantro and even a banana, for thickness and sweetness. Mulligatawny is actually Anglo-Indian, so that makes some degree of sense.
Cursory research shows that mulligatawny may have originally been based on lentils; as I got this recipe from a Paleo cookbook, this version is not. However, it captures the exactly flavors I was hoping for — warm, inviting and a little bit spicy, tempered by the fruit’s sweetness. It takes 40 minutes, serves only four, and is the perfect thing to whip up for dinner on a cold January night. Enjoy with a little naan if you like, rice if you don’t, or solo, maybe beefed up with a little chicken.
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
- 1 tsp tomato paste
- 1/4 cup shredded unsweetened dried coconut
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (1-inch) piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated (roughly 1 Tbsp)
- 2 tsp Indian curry powder
- 3 cups vegetable broth or bone broth
- 1 celery stalk, roughly chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1/2 ripe banana, peeled
- 1/4 cup diced apple (I used Honeycrisp)
- 2 Tbsp minced fresh cilantro
- Heat the oil in a stockpot over medium heat. Add onion and tomato paste and cook, stirring, until the onions soften — about 5 minutes.
- Add coconut, garlic, ginger, and curry powder to the pot, and stir to combine ingredients. Pour in broth, add celery, carrot, banana and apple. Bring contents of the pot to a vigorous boil.
- Turn down the heat to low. Cover pot and let simmer for 30 minutes or until everything is tender.
- Use an immersion blender to puree the soup, tilting the pan to get the maximum amount of puree power 🙂 Garnish with cilantro and enjoy!