Wednesday, December 7, 2011


This is the only item I requested on my Christmas list from my husband.
I really want one.  I think it will make everything I cook taste absolutely fabulous. Here's hoping. I am even willing to give up precious real estate in my cupboard to give it a home.

If I don't happen to get it this year, which really is okay, I can continue to borrow my next door neighbor's when I need it. Another perk of hub life.

Anyway, last night I made the following recipe in this awesome, yet heavy, cast iron pot.  My arms got an additional workout to the one they got during my morning Pilates routine.  Yes, I am now exercising in the morning. More on that later.

I got this recipe from my friend Jen and I wish I could credit the original source. Maybe its her, I am just not sure. Sorry, Jen!

I fully anticipated much groaning and lots left in the bowls from my three kids. Lentils just usually aren't our thing. I have rarely cooked them even though I really like them.  Well, I continue to be surprised by my kids. They ate to the bottom of their bowls without one complaint. I actually think it was a "hit".  Don't tell them, but tonight we get to eat the left overs.

Very unlike it was when my mom served lentil hot dish for dinner when I was about 6 years old. Those of us kids who were old enough to eat it literally had to count down with my dad to put each bite in our little resistant mouths. I am sure now the recipe was just fine. We just hadn't acquired the taste for lentils. I mean literally the whole meal was counting down to eat every single bite.  My poor mother. Nothing like slaving over a hot stove and having your dear little children around you gagging on your food.  She's a saint.

Anyway, here's the recipe and it is good.  I doubled it, but kept the garlic and onion to its original amount and it still tasted too garlicy for me.  I also skipped the cheese garnish and served whole grain and white Ciabatta rolls with it. Another big hit.

Lentil Soup

3 strips of bacon (3 oz.) cut into ½ inch pieces
1 large onion, chopped
3 medium carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise, and cut into ¼ inch half-moons
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbs. tomato paste
1 ½ cup lentils, picked over and rinsed
½ tsp. dried thyme
2 cans (14.5oz. each) reduced sodium chicken broth
1 Tbs. red wine vinegar
coarse salt and ground pepper

1.  In a Dutch oven (or other 5-quart pot with a tight fitting lid), cook bacon over medium-low heat until browned and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes.  Pour off all but 1 tablespoon fat.

2.  Add onion and carrots; cook until softened, about 5 minutes.  Stir in garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Stir in tomato paste, and cook 1 minute.

3.  Add lentils, thyme, broth, and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer.  Cover; cook until lentils are tender, 30 to 45 minutes.

4.  Stir in vinegar, 1 tsp salt, and ¼ tsp. pepper.  Serve immediately.  Garnish with parmesan cheese.

1 comment:

Jen said...

I wish I could take credit. Nothing is original with me in the kitchen! It's from a fun little Martha Stewart publication...Everyday Food, March 2005. It's a hit here, too. (Although, can you really go wrong with a recipe that starts with bacon?!)