Thursday, January 2, 2014

Creamy Lentil Soup with Turnips.

Yesterday K and I stayed indoors at home to celebrate 2014, watching football, listening to podcasts, and just hanging out. Despite that almost all of our snow melted last weekend, the streets and sidewalks are full again as it has been snowing off and on for over 24 hours. We only went outside once in an attempt to walk to Trader Joe's and pick up a few items, but it was closed. Good for them for giving employees an extra day off, but I could have used some bananas!

Anyways. I have had lentil soup on my mind lately and it was the perfect cozy day to test a new recipe. The cafeteria in my office building serves a delicious vegan lentil soup that I love, but it's not available often enough. I have been wanting to try making it myself {though this version is not vegan with the use of chicken broth and cream...}

I used red and green lentils for this soup, and added a few turnips leftover from our CSA. I served it with homemade bread and pasta - instead of adding the pasta to the soup itself, we ladled the soup over a bit of cooked pasta with a sprinkle of cheese on top. This was my first attempt at homemade bread too - I highly recommend the information and recipe from The Fresh Loaf.

Creamy Lentil Soup with Turnips
Serves 4-6.

For the soup:
1 and 1/4 cups green lentils {dry}
3/4 cup red lentils {dry}
3 small turnips {peeled and chopped}
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots {chopped}
2 celery stalks {chopped}
4 cloves garlic
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
8 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

To add at the end:
1 tsp adobo sauce
1/4 cup half and half
1 cup ditalini pasta
Parmesan cheese

Step 1 ~ Prepare and chop vegetables and turnips.
  • Chop onions, carrots, celery, and garlic. Peel and chop turnips into small cubes. Set aside.
Step 2 ~ Saute vegetables.
  • Add olive oil to a Dutch oven or large soup pot on medium heat. Saute garlic for a few minutes, just until it starts to brown. Add all of the vegetables and herbs and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally: onion, celery, carrot, turnips, cumin, thyme, oregano, and black pepper. 
  • Add the lentils and stir; add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. 
  • Turn the heat down to low and simmer the soup for 30 minutes, covered, stirring occasionally. 
Step 3 ~ Prepare pasta and final soup steps.
  • After the soup has simmered for 30 minutes, turn off the heat. Add adobo sauce and half and half - stir and let the soup sit, covered, while you prepare the pasta.
  • Prepare pasta according to "al dente" directions.
  • Serve each soup bowl over 1/3 cup of cooked pasta. Top each bowl with a generous sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.
{Adapted from Giada's Lentil Soup Recipe}

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