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Mulligatawny Soup

Deliciously warming mulligatawny soup for the perfect autumn meal.

This South Indian soup combines shredded, tender chicken in a thick, creamy broth flavoured with curry and an array of warming spices.

"Mulligatawny," derived from the Tamil words for pepper and water, didn't originally contain any meat. This was added later as the soup became more popular internationally. Which also makes this soup easy to convert to vegan, simply by omitting the chicken.

It is thickened with the use of coconut milk and puréed cashews instead of starches (like cornstarch or potato starch) or cream. This makes the soup dairy-free and adds to the depth of flavours.



(Makes 8 servings)

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight in water (+ more for garnish - optional)

  • 2 large skinless, boneless chicken thighs

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 tablespoon plant-based butter

  • 1 small sweet onion, chopped

  • 2 stalks celery, chopped

  • 1 large carrot, chopped

  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, divided

  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper, divided

  • 2 teaspoons curry powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric

  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom

  • 6 cups vegetable stock (or chicken stock)

  • 1 cup red lentils

  • 1 can (400ml) unsweetened coconut milk

  • 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and cubed



In an airtight container, add the raw cashews and 2 cups cold water. Seal the container and refrigerate overnight.

When ready to make the soup, place the chicken thighs onto a plate and sprinkle with 1/2 a teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper. Set aside.

In a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, add the extra-virgin olive oil and butter. When the butter has melted and starts to bubble, add the onion, carrots, celery, and sweet potato with the remaining salt, and ground black pepper. Mix and sauté until the onion starts to soften and become translucent (about 6 or 7 minutes). Add the minced garlic and stir, continuing to sauté for another minute.

Add the chicken thighs and work them to the bottom of the pot. Let cook several minutes then give the pot a good stir and flip the chicken thighs over, again working them to the bottom of the pot. Once the outside of the chicken is no longer pink, stir in the tomato paste until well mixed. Add the curry, cumin, coriander, turmeric, paprika, cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom then stir well.

Add the vegetable stock and stir well. Add the lentils and coconut milk then stir to combine well. Bring the pot to a simmer and reduce the heat to medium. Simmer for about 15 minutes then transfer the chicken to a plate and shred using forks (or alternately, place the chicken thighs into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and run on medium-low speed until the chicken is broken into pieces). Reintroduce the shredded chicken into the pot and add the apple. Cook for another 20 minutes, or until the sweet potato is fork tender.

Drain and rinse the cashews and transfer into a blender or food processor. Add 1/2 cup cold water and blend until smooth. Pour into the soup, mix well, and cook an additional 5 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

Serve garnished with cashews and chopped fresh parsley (optional).


Nutritional Information Per Serving:

total calories = 224 | total fat = 11.34g | saturated fat = 2.52g | cholesterol = 23.13mg | sodium = 904.75mg | net carbohydrates = 17.38g | dietary fibre = 5g | sugars = 8.05g | protein = 9.48g

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