Sunday, January 20, 2008

Lentil soup

So what exactly is a heart healthy soup recipe? First, you should know that foods low in saturated fats, cholesterol, and high on fiber are good for your heart's health and ya know we all need healthy hearts. When you're searching for heart healthy recipes, look for recipes that contain low saturated fat, and low cholesterol.
Lucullian Delights has paired up with another wonderful blogger, Joanna's Food,to create Heart of the Matter The deadline for submitting is January 24th I do believe. Even if you don't enter, we all know we should be eating healthier so go take a look and see what you might enjoy preparing for your family or even just yourself.

While visiting sister Moon last month I went with her while she did her docent duties at the Getty Center. The restaurant there is quite good. I had the lentil soup and to tell you it was divine is an under statement, just the right spices and consistency.

This is my adapted version from Cooks Illustrated

Makes about 2 quarts, serving 4 to 6

3 slices bacon (about 3 ounces), cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 large onion , chopped fine (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 medium carrots , peeled and chopped medium (about 1 cup)
3 medium cloves garlic , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1 tablespoon)

1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes , drained I used fire roasted
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves
1 cup lentils (7 ounces), rinsed and picked over
1 teaspoon table salt

ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth I also added 1/2 cup beef broth and cut the chiken broth to 4 cups
1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar Didn't have so I used sherry
5 ounces baby spinach I used kale because I just like the flavor more than spinach

1. Fry bacon in large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until fat is rendered and bacon is crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Add onion and carrots; cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables begin to soften, about 2 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in tomatoes, bay leaf, and thyme; cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in lentils, salt, and pepper to taste; cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until vegetables are softened and lentils have darkened, 8 to 10 minutes. Uncover, increase heat to high, add wine, and bring to simmer. Add chicken broth and water; bring to boil, cover partially, and reduce heat to low. Simmer until lentils are tender but still hold their shape, 30 to 35 minutes; discard bay leaf.

2. Puree 3 cups soup in blender until smooth, then return to pot; stir in vinegar or sherry and heat soup over medium-low until hot, about 5 minutes. Stir in spinach or kale and continue to heat soup, stirring frequently, until spinach or kale is wilted, about 3 minutes; serve.

Enjoy cause your heart will thank you


Kalyn said...

I made lentil soup for this month too but I haven't gotten around to posting it! Nothing better than lentil soup if you ask me!

Moon said...

I've just discovered the lentil and it is good.

La Vida Dulce said...

Make it healthy, but don't forget the bacon---this has gotta be good and good for ya!

Doodles said...

Yes pancetta would be very good in this soup. Next time!!!

Obsessive Foodie or Food Addict....You Decide said...

I have a tip about the bacon...I buy a nieman's ranch bacon at Whole Foods/Fresh Market in the deli section. I take a pair of kitchen scissors and I cut away the fat and just use the meaty portion of the bacon. It still give off a little fat and imparts great flavor but you lose the bulk of all that grease.

Grandma Poppi said...

Love lentil soup and this receipe is similar to mine. I add a can of Rotel tomatoes with some green chilies. Adds a nice little kick.