If you (and your teeth) survived the onslaught of sugar that is the holiday of Purim, congratulations! In an effort to stay away from sweets and embrace wholesome, hearty foods, I present one of the most humble of all foods: The lentil. A seemingly quiet, unassuming legume, lentils are super cheap, packed with protein, fiber and vitamins. Oh, and they're tasty.
This soup gets its red base from tomato sauce, but doesn't pack an overwhelmingly tomatoey flavor. I threw a whole lot of vegetables in there because they're tasty, but you can rotate and vary the produce of your choice. Sip on!
Lentil Soup – Serves 6-8
two tablespoons vegetable oil
one medium onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1 cup shredded carrots
1 medium zucchini, diced
15 ounces tomato sauce (1 ¾ cup)
4-5 cups vegetable broth
¾ cup lentils
salt and pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium flame. Add the onion and cook, stirring regularly, 12-15 minutes, until started to brown. Add the garlic, celery, carrots and zucchini and cook, stirring regularly, an additional 15 minutes.
Add the tomato sauce and broth and lentils and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, and cook for 45 minutes to an hour until lentils are tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add more water or broth to get the consistency of your liking.