This is a tasty, savory autumn soup. The smokiness of the paprika contrasts with the sweetness of the squash and earthiness of the lentils beautifully. I made it to pair with a chipotle cheddar potatoes au gratin.
1 small butternut squash or equivalent, cut into half-inch chunks
1 leek, chopped
1/2 cup green lentils
4 large garlic cloves, minced
2 bay leaves
1 tsp thyme
1 and 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
Salt and black pepper to taste
1. Heat a bit of olive oil in a pot. Add garlic, bay leaf, and thyme, sautee.
2. Add squash and leek. Cover pot and allow vegetables to cook down. It can be helpful to add a small amount of water to keep them from scorching to the bottom of the pan.
3. While the vegetables are cooking down, mix in smoked paprika.
4. Add lentils once the squash has softened. Allow the squash to cook until it can be crushed against the side or bottom of the pot. The goal is for the soup to be thick and fairly smooth while retaining the textures of the ingredients.
5. Add 1-2 cups of water or stock until the desired consistency is reached. Mix the soup with a broad spoon until the squash falls apart, forming a thick soup base.It helps to crush it against the pot.
6. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve.