|Red Lentil Soup with 12-Grain Cheesy Toast|
Lentils are a nutritious legume that provide the following benefits:
1. Good source of vegetarian protein (9 grams per ½ cup)
2. Very good source of fiber (8 grams per ½ cup)- fills you up, not out!
3. Rich in essential nutrients such as folate, manganese, and iron
4. Quick to prepare- no need to soak overnight like beans
6. Best of all: they’re dirt cheap
So it’s no wonder Esau was so willing to trade away his birthright. He must have known all the health benefits of lentils! Lentils come in different colors: red, brown, and green. Brown and green hold their shape well when cooked and add a great texture. Red pretty much disintegrates in soup acting like a thickening agent while still providing all the vital nutrition.
I love making soup for dinner when the weather starts getting cooler. This past week I made a red lentil soup, a mirpoix-based (onion, carrot, celery) soup with red lentils and wild rice. It has been a staple at our dinner table for years. The final product was so creamy since the lentils completely dissolved.
Red Lentil Soup
2 Tbsp Olive oil
2 Vidalia or sweet onions, halved and sliced
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed (I use 3 frozen crushed garlic cubes)
Salt and pepper to taste
1tsp Garlic powder
1tsp Onion powder
8 c Water + 2 Tbsp consommé
1 c Dry red lentils, rinsed
¾ c Pearl barley, rinsed
1 Tbsp Lemon juice
1 Tbsp Red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1. In a large stockpot sauté onion, celery, and carrots in oil on medium-low heat until onions start turning light brown.
2. Sprinkle salt, pepper, garlic, and onion powder on onions and celery while cooking.
3. Once vegetables appear soft, pour in water + consommé. Raise heat to high, cover, and bring to a boil.
4. Once boiled, add lentils and barley and bring back to a boil. Once boiling, bring to a simmer and cover.
5. 1 hour into simmering, add lemon juice, red wine vinegar, and brown sugar
6. Simmer for another 30 min-1 hr (total 1.5-2 hours, stirring occasionally)
7. Enjoy with some rustic bread!