By Alaina Coffey, Senior Dietetics Student – Sargent College
Students cried tears of joy while dicing onions to make lentil soup! The soup recipe, adapted from Sabrina Pashtan’s Saborina.com, accompanied by graduate student Jasper Zhao’s green tea from China created a comforting hot meal on a fall evening as our weather gets colder. Lentils do not require lengthy soaking time like other dry beans, yet they provide numerous nutrients; they are especially rich in lean protein, dietary fiber, folate, and iron. Additionally, lentils are a good source of potassium, calcium, zinc, niacin, and vitamin K.
We made a few creative adjustments to the original recipe at the test kitchen. First, we added diced large carrots for sweetness; if you have a favorite vegetable that is not included in the recipe, you can experiment on your own by adding in different vegetables. The soup turned out very thick because the lentils absorbed all of the water in the additional recipe, so next we added extra water and tomato puree.
While the soup tasted hearty and wholesome, the flavor was a little bland (we suspect the lack of salt from the no-added salt tomato puree), so we opened up the spice cabinet and students tried adding in their own combinations of spices. Students enjoyed the soup with cumin, oregano, crushed red pepper, and chili powder. Further suggestions from students included lemon and curry.
Lentils are power-packed with important nutrients and provide a great source of protein, I would recommend adding in a whole grain such as brown rice, barley, or whole wheat bread for dipping to make this meal complete. Try out this lentil soup recipe at home and customize it with your own favorite vegetables and spices. You can’t go wrong – lentil soup is quick, comforting, and nutrient dense. Enjoy its benefits!
(Recipe adapted from Saborina.com)
Yield: 6 servings
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow or white onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1.5 cups dried French green lentils, rinsed
2 bay leaves
1 cup tomato puree, no-salt added
4 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
Black pepper, to taste
3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
1. Sautee onion and garlic in a medium to large pot over medium heat until translucent.
2. Add lentils, bay leaves, tomato puree, and water. Stir.
3. Cook for approximately 30 minutes or until the lentils are soft, adding more water if necessary to keep from sticking.
4. Once the lentils are softened, season with salt, pepper and red wine vinegar.
5. Adjust with more water to thin consistency if desired. Enjoy!
|Nutrition information||Per serving|
|Saturated Fat||0.5 g|