vegetarian lentil soup- revisited


A cold rainy night and a potluck dinner with extended family, old friends and new – that calls for big pots of chile and vegetarian lentil soup. This lentil soup has been my favorite for as long as some of those childhood friendships! It’s healthy and satisfying, smells and tastes great, is inexpensive and easy to make, and a virtual “bottomless pot” as it’s delicious as a thick stew or as you add more water while it simmers to feed more people. Goes great with a glass of red wine or a chilled microbrew, a mixed green salad or a bowl of chips, depending on who shows up.

fullsizeoutput_15d0

ingredients:

  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 medium red potato, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-3 red Serrano or red thai hot peppers, minced
  • 1 medium rutabaga, chopped
  • 1 medium turnip, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 cups lentils, culled and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup brown basmati rice
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 2-3 T each oregano, basil, thyme, and sage to taste
  • 2-3 T red cider vinegar
  • 1 t salt and fresh black pepper to taste, added after soup is cooked
  • Parmesan cheese

instructions:

In large 5 quart soup pot with lid, saute chopped onions and red potato in 2-3 T olive oil. After 2-3 minutes add minced garlic and red peppers, chopped rutabaga, turnip, carrots, and celery, oregano, basil, thyme, and sage, continuing to saute for 2-3 minutes. Add carefully culled and rinsed lentils and basmati rice, stir well. Add canned tomatoes including juice and red cider vinegar. Put 8 cups water on the stove top to heat til near but not boiling, then add 6 cups to the soup pot and stir well. Cover and bring to simmer, then lower heat and cook with lid just slightly cracked open for 1 hour-1.5 hours or so, checking and stirring occasionally. Add more water as it cooks, getting all 8 cups in to create a thick stew, or yet more water to create a thick soup. Test rutabaga, carrots, and lentils for doneness. Once vegetables are soft, lentils and rice fully cooked, add 1 t salt and fresh black pepper to taste. Serve topped with Parmesan cheese. Tastes even better the next day. Freezes well.

curried legumes with rainbow chard


ingredients:

  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 t cumin seeds
  • 1 t coriander
  • 1 t tumeric
  • 1/2 cube vegetable bouillion
  • 3/4 c red lentils
  • 3/4 c yellow split peas
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1 small red pepper, chopped
  • 1 bunch rainbow chard
  • 3 1/2- 4 c water (4 c results in stew consistency to serve in bowl, use less if you want more of a thick dal)

instructions:

Cull through then rinse lentils and split peas well. Dissolve 1/2 bouillon cube in 1 c boiled water. Cut away and discard any dry hard stems from the chard, then slice lengthwise and chop into ribbons (including fresh stems.)

In large soup pot, saute chopped onion in 2-3 T olive oil for 3-4 minutes, add garlic and cumin seeds and continue to saute for 2 minutes. Add coriander and tumeric, stir well as add in lentils and split peas. Add the dissolved bouillon plus 3 1/2 cups water. Bring to boil then reduce heat to simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Add chopped carrots and simmer 15 minutes. Check softness of split peas and carrots, and check fluid level- add more if nearing sticking point or if you desire more of a soup. Then add red pepper and chard, simmer covered for another 4-5 minutes until chard is bright green and soft but not mushy. Add 1/2 t salt and black pepper to taste. Serve with basmati rice.