Tomato and Carrot Soup with Halloumi Croutons

This soup is beyond divine. I make it with fresh tomatoes, carrots, a few red lentils and some cayenne pepper. These delicious Halloumi croutons are the brainchild of Melissa Hemsley and are so delicious that I have had to share them! If you are dairy free replace Halloumi with Tofu. I have topped it off with swirls of fresh pesto.

Ingredients, serves 4

30ml extra virgin olive oil

½ white onion, finely diced

2 garlic cloves, crushed

40g dried red lentils

400g fresh vine tomatoes, roughly chopped or one tin of tomatoes, such as cherry tomatoes

4 large carrots, peeled and grated

400ml vegetable stock

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

salt and pepper


  1. Heat the oil in a pan and gently sauté the onions in the olive oil for two minutes. Add the garlic and cook for a further two minutes or until onions are soft and tender.
  2. Add the grated carrots and the chopped tomatoes and sauté for a further two minutes
  3. Add the lentils, vegetable stock, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. If you are using ground lentils, sprinkle them in slowly while stirring to avoid clumping!
  4. Simmer for 20 minutes until the lentils are soft.
  5. When slightly cooled use a purée stick to blend or transfer to a food processor and blend until smooth.
RED LENTIL TIP:  If you would like to reduce the cooking time, whizz up the red lentils in a food processor or mini blender first. This makes a lentil flour in around 20 seconds. I make more than I need and store it in a glass jar to save time for another meal.

Halloumi Croutons 

  1. Cut a block of halloumi cheese into dice-sized squares or around 75g per person.
  2. Stir through one tablespoon of green pesto or one level teaspoon per person.
  3. Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan and add the halloumi squares. Turn the heat down to high medium, to avoid burning.
  4. As the water is driven off the cheese, it will start to become crispy on the outside and soft in the middle.
  5. When all sides of the cheese are crispy, pop into the soup instead of croutons. Take care not to burn!



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