Monday, March 2, 2009

Hints of Spring and Soup

For the first time,
in what it feels like a long time,
we had dinner when the sun was still visible.

Spring is coming.

And even though there is still
snow lingering on the ground,

I now have hope
that is wont be much longer
until we will be having
picnic dinners outside again.

But until then,
I am still enjoying
warm winter foods.

Tonight's dinner was...

Sausage and Lentil Soup

1/3 pound French green lentils
olive oil
1 cup diced yellow onions (3 large)
1 cup chopped leeks, white and light green parts only (2 leeks)
1/3 tablespoon minced garlic (1 large cloves)
1/3 tablespoon kosher salt
1/3 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 minced tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1/3 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup medium diced celery (4 stalks)
1 cup medium diced carrots (3 carrots)
4 cups chicken stock or broth
1/8 cup tomato paste
1/3 lb kielbasa, cut in 1/2 lengthwise and sliced 1/3-inch thick
1 tablespoon dry red wine
Freshly grated Parmesan, for serving

In a large bowl, cover the lentils with boiling water
and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Drain.

In a large stockpot over medium heat, heat the olive oil and saute the onions, leeks, garlic, salt, pepper, thyme, and cumin for 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are translucent and tender.

Add the celery and carrots and saute for another 10 minutes.

Add the chicken stock, tomato paste, and drained lentils, cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for 1 hour, or until the lentils are cooked through and tender.

Check the seasonings. Add the kielbasa and red wine
and simmer until the kielbasa is hot.

Serve drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with grated Parmesan.

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