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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Recipe: Warm Lentil Soup for a Cold Winter Day


When you look outside and see gray skies, clouds, or possibly snow -- there's nothing better to warm you up than a hearty bowl of soup.

I absolutely love soup. It's light yet filling and you can be so creative with the ingredients and flavors.

Way back over Thanksgiving, the family and I left Arizona and went back home to Michigan to celebrate the holiday with our families. One particular day, my dad mentioned going out to grab some lunch. Knowing how particular I am about the foods I eat, he pondered for a minute, then enthusiastically said, "I know just the place." It turned out to be the cute little soup and sandwich shop, Zoup.

Perfect.

I got some type of veggie sandwich and a cup of lemon lentil soup. The soup was downright delicious. So much in fact, that I made mental note to try and re-create it once I got back to Arizona.

Well, after reviewing tons of different recipes to get a feel of what ingredients go in the soup (my usual process for creating my own recipes), and a little trial and error, I got it. And I want to share it with you. So the next time you're feeling a little gloomy and cold from the winter weather, go ahead -- whip up this tasty and healthy soup. You'll be happy you did.

Check it out!

Ingredients:

2 cups lentils
2 1/2 cups water
3 cups vegetable stock (plus)
1 carrot, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
1/2 green pepper, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1 small tomato, diced
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp curry powder
1/4 tsp cumin
1 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp seasoned salt
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp vegetable chicken base
1/8 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/8 tsp pepper (or to taste)
1/2 lemon, juiced
Lemon zest grated from 1/4 of the lemon

Directions: 
1. In a stock pot, on medium heat add coconut oil and olive oil. Add garlic, onions, green pepper, carrots and celery. Saute until tender, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.

2. Add water, vegetable stock. Then add lentils.

3. Add remaining ingredients: tomatoes, vegetable base, seasonings, lemon juice and lemon zest. Bring to a boil and stir frequently for a couple minutes.

4. Reduce heat to low and let soup simmer for about 30 minutes or until the consistency is no longer liquid, but of a thick consistency. You can add more vegetable stock, if it becomes too thick.

Enjoy!

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