I am a soup-lover. I could eat one every day but, it seems to me you need to have a little bit of a chill in the air to really enjoy them – especially the hearty kind. But then, maybe that’s just me.
I went out for a walk with the pooch Tuesday morning and you could actually hear the falling leaves landing on the frozen ground! Alrighty then… we have just gotten a reality check! We are “Falling Back” with the clocks this coming Sunday which is a definite sign that winter is just around the corner.
That means it’s soup time! That heart-warming, feel-good meal that I love so much. I set to work.
I was in the mood for a lentil soup so I went through a couple of my standard cookbooks, compared recipes and then finally made my own!
2-3 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
2-3 carrots, diced
2-3 stalks celery, diced, keep leaves for garnish
2-3 garlic cloves, slice or chopped
2 cups of lentils, rinsed and picked over (I use Dupuy as they keep their shape well)
Salt & pepper
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried oregano
3 cups chicken stock (or veggie stock, or water)
3 cups water
1 can whole Italian tomatoes, hand-squeezed
Large bunch of kale, stem removed, and chopped
Heat olive oil in stockpot and gently sautée 1st four ingredients until soften but not browned, about 5-6 minutes. Add lentils and mix around to warm up, about 5 minutes. This allows the lentils to get coated in the mixture of oil & veggies. Sprinkle in seasoning.
Add stock and water and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and gently cook, partially covered, for 20 minutes or so – the lentils must be softened but still al dente and not mushy!
Add hand-crushed tomatoes, chopped kale and leftover celery tops (if using). Bring heat up to a low boil to cook kale, verify seasoning and adjust if necessary.
Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and a touch of wine vinegar.
Guaranteed to warm up your tummy!