March 08, 2013

Lentil Soup

I know what you're thinking.  Another soup recipe?  Seriously?!   In my defense, I didn't mean to... Honestly.   This bag of lentils was meant for a "higher purpose" other than another batch of soup.  I had seen a recipe in one of the numerous food magazines that arrives at this address using lentils.  It looked so good.  It was all gloss and glamour, the kind of photo that belongs tucked inside of a black plastic wrapper.  You know the kind of photo I'm talking about.  It made lentils look sexy and that my friends is no easy task.

Well, that was my intention.  And then a cold front came through.  Goodbye sexy lentils and hello lentil soup.  So you see, it really isn't my fault at all that I'm posting yet another soup recipe.  Blame Mother Nature, she can take it.

The best part of this endeavor: the soup was so good, it was inhaled before I had a chance to take a decent shot for this post.  Slight oversight, my apologies. 
The actual best part of this is that you probably have a good portion of the ingredients already and thus a trip to the store may not even be necessary (hooray!!!). 
I, on the other hand, am still in pursuit of sexy lentils so off to the store I go.  Call me if you need anything.

Lentil Soup

1 1/2 cups lentils, rinsed (do not soak)
2 stalks celery, small dice
3 medium carrots, peeled and cut in small dice
1 medium-large yellow onion, small dice
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp canola oil
1 1/2 can diced tomato, with juice
5 oz baby spinach or baby kale
2 quarts vegetable (or chicken) stock
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper

In a medium-large stock pot, heat oil until barely shimmering.  Add onion, celery and carrots.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cook over medium heat until starting to soften, 5 - 10 minutes.  Add garlic and cook another 5 minutes, stirring frequently. 

Add tomatoes and their juice, cook 2 - 3 minutes then add stock, bay leaves, thyme and lentils.  Season again with salt and pepper.  Taste and adjust if necessary, adding more salt and/or pepper if needed.   Stir to combine, cover and simmer until lentils are beginning to soften, about 15 minutes.

Add baby spinach (or kale) and stir in to wilt.  Simmer an additional 10 - 15 minutes until vegetables and lentils are soft.

picture does NOT do soup justice...

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