Monday, February 18, 2008

Post Vacation: More legumes

Back from a wonderful weekend away at my in-laws cabin with my sweetie. As is our way, one of the fleshly delights we enjoyed while away was lots of good eating. The last time we went there for the weekend, we really thoroughly overate. This time we were smart enough to scale it back a few notches. It was still delicious and indulgent: we used some gift cards for Trader Joe's we got for Christmas, so we splurged on foods that I would not normally buy: expensive cheese, grapes out of season, dried tart cherries for the apple crisp I made... but it was still a very economical weekend for two adults to feast in deliciousness for 4 days!

Well, with the meat and cheese eating of the past weekend behind me, the first thing I did when I got home was make a big pot of lentil soup. There are a million variations on lentil soup, but this is my mom's recipe that I grew up on, and it's still my favourite. I've got a fridge full of it and, with the help of some chicken thighs I've got thawing that I will curry tomorrow, it will get me through the week and make me feel... de-indulged? digested? Whatever the word is for eating normally, that's what lentil soup is.

Betty Ann's Lentil Soup

1 cup brown lentils, washed and picked over
1 large onion, minced
olive oil
2 small potatoes, cubed
1 cup spinach
1 carrot, grated
1 can diced tomatoes and juice
shredded cheese for serving (parmesan or feta are best)

saute the onion in olive oil (i use 1 tbl). when clear add lentils and 8 cups of water. Bring to a boil and simmer 2 hours. After 1 1/2 hours put in the potatoes. At the end, add the tomatoes, spinach and carrot, and any seasonings you like (i like basil). Simmer ten more minutes and serve with cheese. Mmmm. Sticks to your ribs, high- fiber style.

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