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Meatless Monday: Hearty Vegetarian Lentil Soup

 

This soup is hearty, rich and perfect on a chilly winter day.

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 1/2 tsp. each, dried thyme, salt and pepper
  • 32 ounces vegetable broth
  • 1 1/4 cups lentils, rinsed, drained
  • 1 14 1/2–ounce can stewed tomatoes

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in a large, heavy bottom saucepan over medium–high heat.  Add the celery, onion, garlic and carrots.  Add seasonings.  Cook until the mixture has softened and is light golden, around 10-15 minutes.
  2. Add the broth, lentils and tomatoes to the vegetable mixture and bring to a boil.  Lower the heat to medium–low and simmer the soup, covered, for about 45 minutes or until lentils have softened.
  3. Reserve 1 cup of the soup mixture, then working in 2 batches, add the rest of the soup to a blender and puree until smooth, about 30 seconds (could also use an immersion blender).  ***Be sure to remove the small venting cap from the blender to allow steam to come out and place a kitchen towel to cover the opening.  Return the pureed soup to the saucepan, add the reserved un-pureed soup and gently heat for 2 minutes.
  4. Serve with crusty bread.

Serves 8 as a starter or 6 as a main course.

Veronique Deblois, Food & Wine Chickie: Veronique is a food and wine writer based in Morris County, NJ. As the author of the popular blog, Food & Wine Chickie Insider, Veronique shares recipes, wine and restaurant reviews and insight into the travel industry of which she’s a 15-year veteran. Follow Veronique on Twitter or like her Facebook page.

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