Monday, July 11, 2011

Sausage Lentil Soup

I know summer time isn't the time you think about making soup. But this is one you need to consider making any time of year. It's so flavorful and satisfying. And it's even better the next day when the spices have had a chance to mingle for a while.

At first it looks like a blend of ordinary soup ingredients. But the addition of a little curry powder provides a nice kick that takes this soup beyond ordinary. Charles requests that we have this soup often, even in the heat of summer.

Here's what you need:

Olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 stalk of celery, diced
2 teas minced garlic
2 TBSP tomato paste
1 teas ground cumin
1 teas curry powder
1/4 teas salt
1/4 teas pepper
1/4 teas chili powder
4 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
1 cup lentils
1/2 pound smoked sausage or kielbasa, cut into small chunks

Heat the olive oil in a soup pot. I usually don't measure the oil, I just use enough to cover the bottom of the pan.

Add the onion, carrots, celery and garlic. Saute for a few minutes until the onions are translucent.

Stir in the tomato paste and spices. Cook for a minute until the spices are fragrant, making sure all the veggies are coated.

Add the chicken broth, water and lentils. Scrape the bottom of the pot to get the spices blended in well. Turn up the heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until the lentils are soft, about 30 minutes.

Using a stick blender, puree the soup for a few seconds. You want to leave some of it chunky. If you don't have an immersion blender, pour about half of the soup into a blender and puree. Just stir back into the soup pot.

Stir in the sausage or kielbasa and simmer for another 10 minutes.

I served my sausage lentil soup with some crusty artisan bread. I've been experimenting with Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day. When I've perfected my technique, I'll share the recipe with you. But this bread is fantastic with soup. Fantastic!

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