Yay spring is here, but the days are still cool and what a better way to warm up than with a cozy and hearty bowl of lentil soup. Inspired by my grandma who made lentil soup often, especially during the Lenten season, this recipe is chock-full of colorful vegetables that will surely help you meet your veggie quota for the day.
Dating back to 8000 BC lentil soup can be seen in the Greek culture, the Bible, and also Jewish tradition.
Lentils were known as a food for the poor centuries ago and then during World War II when food was scarce people took an interest in them again; nowadays, lentils are popular around the world especially in the Middle East where they originated.
Lentils are a great meat substitute because they are so rich and creamy after they are cooked. They are considered very healthy and a good source of protein, fiber, and potassium. It has been said that Hippocrates even prescribed lentils for patients with liver ailments.
This earthy recipe feeds 8 to 10 people, can easily be made in 30 minutes, and is healthy and hearty with the addition of carrots, celery, tomatoes, and spinach. This tasty dish is filling and full of flavor yet light and vegetarian.
This recipe is also published in the Muy Bueno cookbook. And guess what? It will be featured in the upcoming April Highlands Ranch Lifestyle Magazine. These photos by Raemi Vermiglio were taken for the magazine shoot. I can’t wait to see the feature in print.
- 2 cups raw lentils
- 10 cups water
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1⁄2 cup chopped carrots
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 2 vine-ripened or roma tomatoes, chopped
- 1⁄2 cup chopped yellow onion
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1 cup coarsely chopped spinach
- Sort the lentils by removing any stray beans or foreign pebbles that are sometimes present. Rinse lentils in a colander with cool water.
- Over medium heat, in a large stockpot, bring the water to a boil and add the salt. After the water begins to boil, add the rinsed lentils and lower the heat. Cover and simmer until the lentils are almost tender, about 15 minutes.
- While the lentils are cooking, heat oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add carrots, celery, and tomatoes and sauté for about 5 minutes. Add onion and sauté until translucent, about 2 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Reserve.
- Add sautéed vegetables and simmer for 15 minutes. Add spinach and mix. Salt to taste.
- Ladle into a big bowl and serve with your favorite bread.
I’d love to see what you cook!
Tag #MUYBUENOCOOKING if you make this recipe.
Photography by Raemi Vermiglio