Thursday, December 4, 2008

Sick of soup...not yet...

Pot of green lentils, sweet potato, and onions.

I hope you all are not sick of soup yet, because I am still obsessed with eating a warm bowl of the stuff on a cold day. I don't know how many of you have leftover chicken broth and sweet potatoes from Thanksgiving, but if you do this recipe will serve you nicely.

I have had a hankering for lentil soup ever since my coworker, Jennifer, got a bowl at Cosi. I hadn't made lentil soup in awhile, but knew from previous experiences that working with these legumes is fairly simple, especially if you get the red lentils (JAM Note: the red lentils have had their husk removed which shortens cooking time).

I looked up a recipe I had saved from an old washington post article. I went to the store to pick up some ingredients: an onion, cumin, and those red lentils. Of course, the store had no red lentils, so I picked up some green instead. I also forgot the cumin!

I essentially improvised, using the recipe I had seen as inspiration. I sauteed diced onion in a pot with some olive oil. When that started to carmelize, I added one sweet potato (JAM Note: chopped into 1" pieces) and two cloves of garlic. I then rinsed 8 oz of green lentils and added them and along with 16 oz of chicken broth. I threw in some salt, pepper, and chilli powder and brought the mixture up to a boil. Then I cover the pot and let it simmer for about an hour and a half to two hours (JAM Note: or until the lentils are soft).

The flavor of the chicken broth really made these lentils outstanding. They were salty and just a lil smoky. The cumin would have been a nice touch - I will remember that next time. The sweetness of the onion and potato really complimented the lentils nicely. A little extra spiciness might be nice -maybe some extra chilli powder or red pepper flakes could have been added. But overall this dish is simple and hearty. I will be eating this the next couple of days!

2 out of 3 JAMs

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