I love lentils because they cook faster than other beans and they’re crazy good for you, oh and they’re cheap. So I make lentil soup a lot. It’s really hard to go wrong with the lentil, it’s pretty much the most forgiving bean, don’t get me started on what a bitch the garbanzo was to cook from its dry state. Rest assured I figured it out. Back to the soup. This soup was inspired by the fact red potatoes were on sale at the store, and that’s pretty much the end of that story.
I like to use a mixture of red and brown lentils because the red lentils disintegrate while the brown lentils keep their shape giving the soup base different textures, and using two different beans makes it sound like you know what you’re doing…yes.
1 tsp oil
1/2 onion (diced)
1 celery stalk (diced)
1 carrot (diced)
4 medium size red potatoes (cubed, 1/2-1 inch)
1 cup spinach
4 strips bacon
1 cup brown lentils
1 cup red lentils
1/4 tsp cumin (ground)
1/2 tsp dried tarragon
2 tbsp tomato paste
3 cups beef broth (I used sodium free)
2 cups water
salt, pepper to taste
Cook your bacon. Fine. It’s turkey bacon, whatever, it’s still delicious. When it’s done transfer to a paper towel to soak up the remaining fat.
Chop your carrot, celery, onion, and garlic and sweat them with oil (starting with your onion) in your soup pot.
While your veggies are sweating toss your potatoes in the bacon fat. By the way, do you have a cast iron skillet? For $10 at a hardware store I’m of the mind everyone should have one. Plus, what do you think I’m grabbing when the zombie apocalypse hits? Or I guess the more likely, a burglar breaks into my apartment. In either case, I am prepared. Are you?
Once the potatoes have cooked in the bacon fat for a couple minutes, transfer them into the soup pot along with the broth, water, spices, and tomato paste. Stir and start adding your lentils.
Bring to a boil then immediately reduce heat to low. Add 1 cup of spinach. At this point in time I reached my hand into the bag of spinach and pulled out a huge chunk and asked Justin if it looked like a cup, he gave a not too convincing, “Yeah.” I’m pretty sure I could have pulled out the entire contents of the 32 oz bag and he would have said it was 1 cup. I think it’s time for a scale.
Mix in spinach and cover. Simmer for 20 minutes or until potatoes and lentils are soft.