In one teaspoon of olive oil (option - water if oil-free), sauté the red onion, cumin seeds, turmeric and bay leaves, for a couple of minutes - don't let it burn. Add the garlic and chilli and sauté for another few mins, adding a splash of water to prevent it sticking.
Add the ginger, butternut squash and carrots and coat well with the spices.
Add the lentils, vegetable stock, basil, paprika, black pepper and salt to the pan and bring to a boil.
Cover and simmer on a low heat for 30 mins until the butternut squash and lentils are soft.
Meanwhile, chop smoked tofu into small cubes and pop in an pre-heated oven at 180 degrees celsius for 8-10 minutes to firm up.
Once the soup has cooled for a bit, blend using an immersion blender or add to a strong blender. I did it in a couple of batches in my Vitamix. I like my soup relatively thick but add a splash of water if you prefer.
Serve hot with the smoked tofu croutons. Yum!