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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Easiest Ever Lentil Soup

Adam used to always beg me to make soup more often but I would tell him there was no point making big-batch food since we had so little freezer space.

We've had a chest freezer now for about 2 years so I have no excuse. I guess I just forget about soup for some reason. Silly really as I love it too.

My last counselling client of the day cancelled last minute so I got home early. I was suddenly struck with the urge to make Adam soup. Unfortunately, I did not have the urge to go out shopping so I decided I had to make due with what was available. The most obvious choice? Lentil soup!

Lentil soup is one of my favorites. Thick, hearty, tasty and nutritious. It also requires ingredients most of us have in our pantries. Today I was missing fresh onion, celery and green pepper BUT I did have a bag of Arctic Gardens frozen spaghetti mix veggies in the (Chest) freezer! This is my go-to for soups and stews in a pinch. It's made up of diced carrot, celery, onion, and green peppers. Nutritionally, frozen veggies are a good choice and the softer texture works well in a soup. Feel free to use fresh if you have, but this method also saves a TON of chopping time!

Also, if you aren't a fan of curry flavour, omit the curry powder and fresh ginger and try a few bay leaves and some dried thyme instead.

2 tsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 green or red pepper, diced
2 celery spears, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 chunk fresh ginger, peeled and grated
2 tbls curry powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
Cayenne pepper, to taste (optional)
2 cups red lentils
1 can diced tomatoes, with juice
1 litre tetra pack vegetable or chicken stockWater or additional stock

Pour oil into a large pot over medium heat. Add veggies, garlic, ginger, curry powder, salt and pepper. Cook for a few minutes and stir often so spices and garlic do not burn. Add lentils, tomatoes and broth and simmer until lentils are soft and lose their shape (about 45 minutes). Add additional water or broth as needed (after soup came to a boil, I turned down heat to low and added about 4 cups of water). You can leave veggies chunky, or use hand blender to puree soup a bit smoother. Alternatively, put 1/3-1/2 of soup in blender or food processor before returning to pot. Keeps in refrigerator for about 4 days and freezes well.

This one's for you Adam!!

Thank you to everyone who has voted for me on the Circle of Moms site...sorry to mention it again, but if you can, please keep voting once a day until November 17th!