In the comments section of my post earlier this morning, Sparkless over at Madness from the Brink of Insanity said she could use a good lentil soup recipe. I'm almost positive I posted this recipe a year or so back, but do you think I can locate it? Nope. (I know . . . here comes another lecture from my dear daughter on the wisdom of labeling my posts. Bad, Mama Pea, bad. Sigh.)
I had never even seen a lentil until I married into my husband's family. His mom cooked them often because a niece of hers who stayed with them frequently when she was growing up had been diagnosed as anemic and told she should eat a lot of lentils for their iron content. Whether lentils are nutritious or not (they are), I found I loved the taste of them and have enjoyed them prepared in many ways over the years.
But back to the soup. This recipe is super-easy to throw together, very flavorful and I make it often. It freezes well so I always make a giant pot of it and store it in quart containers in the freezer. The original recipe was found in "Laurel's Kitchen," the 1978 Edition, and I've adapted it a bit. I've probably gone through about a ton and a half of lentils in the past however-many-years making this soup.
2-1/2 cups lentils
10 cups water or vegetable or chicken or beef broth
(Its' still a yummy soup made with just water.)
1 medium chopped onion
1 clove minced garlic
1 carrot sliced
1 rib of celery sliced
1 medium potato cubed
2 tablespoons oil or butter
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons salt
Good sprinkle of black pepper
2 teaspoons vinegar, apple cider or wine
Put all of the ingredients except the vinegar in a large soup pot, bring to a boil and then simmer, covered, stirring now and then until the lentils are very soft, about 1-1/2 hours. Remove the bay leaves, add the vinegar and serve. Serves 8-10.
This soup is excellent served with homemade croutons.
Being from "Laurel's Kitchen," it was originally a vegetarian recipe, and a darn good one. But if you want to add ham chunks, sliced sausage (as ours had today much to the chagrin of Chicken Mama [the non-meat eater] who popped in for lunch) or some other meat, that's fine, too.
If you have any left to reheat the next day, the flavor is even better.
Sparkless, I hope you give this a try and that your family likes it.
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