Rich and earthy, this makes a hearty winter meal with lots of crusty bread.
Melt butter in a deepish saucepan over a high heat until nut-brown and foamy. Add onion and cumin seeds. Cook 2–3 minutes, stirring to prevent burning. Add sage, leek, garlic and kumara and stir well. Add lentils and stock and bring to the boil. Simmer 30 minutes until lentils and kumara are tender.
While soup is cooking, heat oil in a small frying pan, add red onion and cook over a moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until it begins to caramelise. Add vinegar, cook until it has evaporated, then remove from heat.
Adjust soup for seasoning and stir in parsley. Ladle into bowls and dollop the onions on top.
© 2003 Peter Gordon. All rights reserved.