Had fourteen to dinner last Friday and very nice it was, though tiring. I can’t count and thought we had twelve guests and an hour before realised I had it wrong. Nearly ran out of soup- but otherwise it was fine. I have realised cheap and cheery stuff goes down very well with some of the great and good, most of the great and good. They loved the top I was wearing. Didn’t know it was H&M £14.99. And were ecstatic about the peasant soup- not available at the Ivy and all the better for that. I borrowed the basic idea from the Moro recipe book and then changed it. You feel this soup must be renewing each cell in the body and will make you live a little longer. It does cheer me up too when I am most morose- which is often. Maybe I should send the recipe to the posh government which is busy promoting happiness to make us forget it is presiding over the most unhappiest of times. A Damehood would surely follow. 

Lentil soup with yogurt stuff
For 4 to 6
1 cup red lentils
2 onions
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp cumin seeds
½  tsp ground cumin
I Knorr chicken stock cube or any other sort
1 pt of water
2 tbsp light olive oil or sunolive oil ( a mixture of sunflower and olive, available in supermarkets)
Juice of half a lime
Salt to taste
½ cup defrosted frozen leaf spinach

1 cup Greek yogurt 
4 spring onions
4 radishes or white radish known as mooli
1 finely chopped green chilli- hot
½ tsp cumin powder

Chop the onions and garlic and sauté in the oil for six minutes.
Add the lentils, water and crumbled stock cube.
Cover and simmer over low heat for fifteen minutes.
Meanwhile puree the spinach in a food processor.
When the lentils are cooked but not mushy- you can check while they are cooking- stir in the spinach and add all the rest of the ingredients.
Cook for another five minutes.

Mix the chilli, onions and radish and stir into yogurt with the salt and cumin. It is the cold accompaniment to the soup. Serve the soup and pass round the yogurt and some bread.