Lentil & Escarole Soup

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Few Tablespoons good olive oil
12 ounces onions, chopped (about 2 medium)
12 ounces carrots, chopped (about 3 to 4 medium)
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1-1/2 cups lentils, any kind
12 ounces fresh tomatoes, chopped (or 1 can tomatoes, any size, any kind; I love Muir Glen brand)
7 cups homemade chicken stock (or good quality storebought)
4 to 8 ounces (or more) escarole, coarsely chopped
Directions
1. Heat olive oil in a large pot on medium. Add onion and carrots and cook about 5 minutes, stirring so the oil coats the vegetables. Make a space in the bottom of the pan, add the garlic, and cook for another two minutes, stirring constantly, until the garlic is cooked but not brown.
2. Add the lentils, tomatoes, and chicken stock and bring to a boil. Simmer, with the lid cracked, for about 45 minutes. Stir every now and again.
3. Add the chopped escarole and cook another 5 minutes. Carefully puree about half of the soup in a blender on low speed until still slightly chunky, then return to the pot. Or use an immersion hand blender (you know I am crazy about my KitchenAid) to puree the soup to desired consistency. Cook over medium heat another five minutes.
4. Serve hot, garnished as desired, and preferably with some kind of crusty bread. This soup keeps well for a few days in the refrigerator and freezes beautifully.
 
Notes:
Variations:
--Add a lot more carrots.
--Add a lot more garlic (and roast it first).
--Use fire-roasted and/or flavored canned tomatoes.
--Add extra tomatoes.
--Use water or vegetable stock for a vegetarian version.
--Stir in some cooked shredded chicken after you blend it up.
--Garnish it with a dollop of sour cream.
--Add your favorite herbs or spices, such as rosemary & thyme or even curry powder.
--Make it a Mexican meal by adding cumin, coriander, and a jar of green tomatillo salsa to the soup, then garnish it with shredded Jack cheese, diced avocado, chopped tomatoes, fresh cilantro, and sour cream (this would be good with the shredded chicken added, too). Serve with tortilla chips.
--Slip in any veggies you can't get people you are feeding to eat otherwise.




Matriarchy

Member since Sep 2007

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