Well, it was actually Jacob’s, since he cooked it. Isaac and Rachel had twin sons. Esau was the elder and Jacob the younger. As the boys grew it became clear that they were totally different in character. Esau revelled in the outdoor life whilst Jacob preferred to stay home and enjoyed cooking. One day Esau returned from hunting absolutely famished. He could smell the potage of red lentils that Jacob had cooked. Esau asked for some, but Jacob refused until Esau agreed to give Jacob his birthright. Esau was so hungry that he swapped his rights as the firstborn with Jacob for ‘a mess of potage’. Genesis 25:29-34.
- 45mo/3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 celery sticks, chopped
- 1 or 2 carrots, sliced
- 8 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 potato, peeled and diced
- 250g / generous cup red lentils
- 1 litre / 4 cups vegetable stock
- 2 by leaves
- 1 or 2 lemons, halved
- 5 ml / ½ tsp ground cumin
- Cayenne pepper or tabasco sauce to taste
- Fresh parsley or coriander, to serve.
- Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the onion and cook until softened. Stir in the celery, carrots, potato and half the garlic. Continue to cook for a few more minutes until beginning to soften.
- Add the lentils and stock and bring to the boil. Simmer for about 30 mins
- Add the bay leaves, remaining garlic and lemons. Cook for a further 10 mins.
- Remove the bay leaves and lemons. Squeeze the hot lemons and return the juice to the pan.
- Liquidise – a wand blender is the easiest way to do this as you will probably need to do several batches in a food processor. Stir in cumin, cayenne pepper or tabasco sauce, salt and pepper to taste.
- Return soup to low heat to warm. Meanwhile boil a kettle. Pour some boiling water into your soup bowls then empty out. Ladle soup into bowls and sprinkle with chopped parsley or coriander.
Approx values: protein 16g, Carbs 48g of which sugars, 4.5g, Fat 9g of which saturates 1.5g. Calcium 50mg, Fibre 5g, sodium 40mg. 330Kcalories.
Note: this recipe is not exactly what Jacob cooked – Esau refers to the food as red, which this is not. To find out how Jacob tricked Isaac into giving him the blessing due to the firstborn read Genesis 27.