Thursday, 27 August 2009

Lentil Soup with Pasta & Vegetables

Here's a good, easy soup for early fall. Early fall already! Well, it's starting to feel like it. I love fall, but summer could linger a little longer; I wouldn't mind.

I used some "acini di pepe" pasta for this soup that I got on sale, presumable because no-one quite knew what to do with it. I wasn't actually very happy with it in the other soups I put it in, but it worked perfectly with the lentils, being the same size and shape. So now we know.

8 to 10 servings
2 hours prep time

Lentil Soup with Pasta and Vegetables
2 cups dried lentils
8 cups water
2-3 bay leaves
2 large onions, chopped
3-4 stalks celery, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
2 tablespoons sunflower seed oil
2 or 3 cups diced tomatoes
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black peppercorns, crushed
1 teaspoon dry oregano
1 cup small pasta shells or other soup pasta
4 cups shredded swiss chard
the juice of 1/2 lemon

Rinse and pick over the lentils, and put them in a soup pot with the water and bay leaves. Bring to a boil and simmer until barely tender, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, peel and chop the onions. Wash and chop the celery. Peel and chop the carrots. Sauté these in the oil, until well softened but not browned. Add them to the lentils.

Add the chopped tomatoes, the salt, pepper and oregano. Simmer for a further 10 or 15 minutes.

The soup can be made ahead to this point. Before serving, cook the pasta separately in plenty of salted, boiling water. It should be underdone by a few minutes. While it cooks, chop the swiss chard finely, and heat the soup. Add the drained pasta, the swiss chard and the lemon juice to the soup. Serve as soon as the swiss chard cooks down. You may need to add more water - this soup tends to become very thick.

Last year at this time I made Peppers Stuffed with Feta, Barley & Herbs and Leeks Vinaigrette.


Sophie said...

MMMMMMMMM,...your soup looks so fabulous!!


Ferdzy said...

Thanks, Sophie!

Melynda said...

Wow, I love lentil soups and this is one I will try. Thanks for the pasta primer, it is hard to know how to use the various shapes of pasta out there.