Has that aforementioned bag of lentils been in there ...oooooh, for more that a year or two?
Don't worry; you can still use them!!
Lentils are a legume that are easy to cook - no soaking required - and they cook up in less than 30 minutes! They are packed with nutrition: folic acid, protein, fiber..., they are inexpensive, versatile, essentially non-perishable,... but from my own informal field research, not commonly used by Nova Scotians.
Sometimes I feel that it is my life purpose to turn Nova Scotians onto legumes.
If I could make a living doing just that, I would accept the job in a minute. Imagine the job title: Bean Queen, Queen Bean, or Lady Fartsalot - hmmmm-not exactly the title I've been dreaming about.
In actuality it is part of my job already - doing quickie cooking sessions with clients in their homes - the recipes usually star a bean or lentils.
The other day a new client called me and said that she had a bag of lentils in the cupboard for over a year now, and would love to know how to use them. I could feel my pulse quicken, my breath become shallow and a surge of adrenaline. Is it normal to become this excited about cooking lentils with someone??
This soup follows the straightforward soup formula of sauteing aromatics such as onion, and garlic in a little oil, adding vegetables, then adding a protein and/or a starch source.Simmer, taste, adjust seasonings. You can use almost any vegetables you have on hand. I really liked the Kale in this soup.
Regarding amounts of water to lentils - for this soup use a ratio of 4:1 - i.e. 4 cups water or broth to 1 cup lentils. You may need to add more water or broth to make it less thick.
Lentil Kale Soup
herbes de provence - or other dried herb combinations: rosemary, oregano, etc.
water or broth
rinsed dried lentils: I used French Puy - you can use red, green or brown lentils
tomato paste (note in photo there is crushed tomatoes - I used leftover tomato paste in the fridge instead)
Kale: rinsed, tough ribs cut off and cut into pieces.
Heat the olive oil in a soup pot. Add the onion, garlic and celery, saute for a few minutes. Add the diced carrot, herbs and saute for a few minutes. Add water and the rinsed lentils, stir and bring to a simmer. Let it simmer until the lentils are tender - about 25 minutes. Add more water or broth to reach desired consistency.
Add the tomato paste and kale and cook for another few minutes.
Season with salt and lots of freshly ground pepper. Taste and adjust seasonings.
|Bella says:" Of all of the Mommies in the world, I had to end up with a lentil loving dietitian!"|