I don’t think I could possibly love such a small human being more than I love my nephew. I spent the last week visiting my sister and brother in law and my new baby nephew (he is only 3 weeks old!). My brother in law had to go back to work so I wen up to help out with things around the house so my sister could give her full attention to the little one. We all had such a wonderful time and I got some of the most amazing bonding time with Harper. Oh that’s his name btw! Isn’t it adorable?! I love it!
our spare time the few minutes between feedings and changings and laundry and cleaning and afternoon walks (he LOVES being outside!) there was some own time while the little man was napping that my sister and I got to spend time together in the kitchen. This was usually broken up into short periods together and me finishing p the rest but I had a blast trying out new recipes! She is the queen of cook books. It was so nice and refreshing to use a cook book and not just hope online and find a recipe. I haven’t done that in forever! I will have three great recipes I am posting this week from my time up there. I apologize in advance that the photos were all snapped quickly on my iPhone and not with my Canon Rebel. Having dinner/lunch/breakfast ready for the family and spending time with Harper and my sis took priority. #sorryimnotsorry
I took the vote to Facebook to find out which of the two soup recipes you all wanted to see first. Ps. I really despise how difficult Facebook makes it for you all to even see my posts. Unfortunately most of the likes and comments for this post ended up on my own personal page when I shared it with friends. Which by the weird workings of Facebook mean that they don’t actually show up on my Page as likes but on my personal page?! ARGH! Like my page so you can hopefully see my posts on your news feed! Please and Thank You!
So onto the recipe. Thanks for bearing with me about family and my Facebook rant. It will be worth it! This recipe is FULL of amazing nutrients (we made it specifically for the nutrition for my sister who is breastfeeding and needs extra protein and lots of veggies for Harper). My sis and I are both vegetarians and her hubby eats a predominately vegetarian diet so we decided to double this recipe so we could all have it for multiple meals through out the week and they would have left overs when I left.
The original recipe is from this awesome cookbook: The New Moosewood Cookbook! We didn’t mess much with the main ingredients other than to play a little with the amounts we used based on what we had and my RUN to the grocery store down the street in the pouring rain during which I forgot a few things. OOPS! Also my sis doesn’t like Thyme and we all love garlic so we added extra of that. The end result was beyond fabulous!
Let’s get started with the veggies! There was A LOT of chopping! OMG she has the best knives ever: the brand is Shun and I want a whole set… I think you have to get married to get things like that for presents lol someday 😉 Seriously though, if I had checked a bag when I went to visit she might have been short a few when I left because I have never known the magic of cooking with insanely sharp knives. It makes a WORLD of difference! What knives do you use? Let me know in the comments!
I started with the garlic which seriously made me miss my boyfriend (I know I am a sap. Deal with it.)! We cook together almost every night of the week and it’s my favorite time of the day with him. We both LOVE garlic and regularly use a whole sleeve in a week… or more! But I HATE the process of peeling and chopping garlic. He finds it meditative. Which I get but I still hate it. If anyone has ideas on ways to make it easier let me know! The recipe called for 6-8 cloves, we were doubling the whole recipe and since the cloves were small I used about 18. Thank god for the sharp knife for the chopping part or I might have lost my mind. I think my fingers still smell like garlic.
Oh yea and then there was the onions. Good thing it wasn’t my fingers in Harper’s mouth that night to soothe him to sleep! I am gunna guess that even after multiple washings and a shower that they did not taste that great! Thankfully the celery and onions were munchable and didn’t contribute any further to my stinky fingers!
While I was chopping all these veggies I brought 13 cups of water to a boil in her giant All Clad 8 qt pot! I seriously could live in her kitchen cabinets which might actually be possible based on how many she has! Their kitchen is a cute little gulley style kitchen but they have more cabinet space than I have ever seen.
It might have made me a teenie tiny bit jealous!
This bad boy held all that water plus 8 cups of dry lentils AND all the chopped veggies! It was kind of a miracle! OK maybe not a miracle. I just don’t own a pot this size but think I might need to buy one.
When you add the veggies you also add basil, oregano and freshly ground black pepper. The only seasoning you add to the lentils while they are cooking is salt. It was so nice to not have a recipe call for TONS of oil. I know some oil is good for you in moderation but I feel like sometimes it is used just because people think they need it. I always try to reduce the amount in recipes with substitutions so it was great not having to worry about that. What do you think about oil in cooking… especially in things like soup?
PREPARE YOUR SELF FOR AWFUL PHOTOS (reason below)!
Who ever invented the process of peeling and de-seeding tomatoes might be a genius in the cooking world but I kinda sorta hate them. This process was
miserable (ok that might be a strong word but it certainly wasn’t fun) and it contributes to the horrible photos. I was a little fed up from the first peel of the first tomato (I seriously think the directions to put them in boiling water for 10 seconds had to be wrong because I am here to tell you that they did not peel easily).
Between the not so great iPhone camera and the mushy mess on the cutting board, these photos are less than appealing. SORRY! They ended up great in the soup despite the pain in the butt they were though. Can anyone tell me why the peeling and de-seeding is necessary? I am sure it’s readily available info on the internet but I haven’t looked it up yet.
This is after adding the tomatoes but before letting the veggies cook down a little longer. The end result, despite the garlic chopping and tomato peeling was ridiculously easy and delicious! Sorry for making you read so much before getting to the recipe! If you read it all you are a trooper and now know about an awesome knife and bought you should probably own!! 😉 If you didn’t you are probably scrolling up to find out what the heck I am talking about!
Fat Free Vegan Lentil Soup
- 8 cup dry lentils
- 13 cups water
- 4 t sea salt
- 12-16 medium garlic cloves, crushed (more if they are small or if you enjoy garlic breathe like me!)
- 2 large yellow onions, chopped
- 4 stalks celery, chopped
- 4 medium carrots (or a little more than 1/2 a small bag of baby carrots), chopped
- 3 medium ripe tomatoes (preferably you use 6 but I forgot to get more at the store)
- lots of freshly ground black pepper
- 1.5 t oregano
- 1.5 t basil
- OPTIONAL: red wine vinegar to drizzle on top (we forgot to do this every time we sat down to eat but it sounds like it would be yummy!)
- Place lentils, water and salt in a large pot. (This one was PERFECT.) Bring to a boil, lower heat to the slowest possible simmer I love cooking on a gas stove but this is hard to find without putting out the flame, and cook, partially covered, for 30 minutes.
- Chop all your veggies BESIDES TOMATOES while your lentils are cooking (should take about 15 minutes unless you hate chopping garlic as much as I do and then it might take the full half hour!). one of these knives will help speed up the process though!
- Stir lentils and add chopped veggies, basil, oregano and fresh ground pepper.
- Partially cover and let simmer another 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Bring enough water to cover your tomatoes in a saucepan to a boil.
- Carefully drop in the tomatoes for 10 seconds, then remove and peel off the skins and squeeze the seeds out I wish you luck!.
- Chop the rest of the tomatoes and add to the soup after the 30 minutes of simmering and cook for at least another 5 minutes.
- Serve this soup with hot although I think it tasted great cold straight out of the fridge as well!
- Drizzle red wine vinegar on top of each scrumptious bowl if you so choose!
Enjoy the hours of energy this protein packed low calorie meal dishes up!
Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Lauren Margolin and And a Side of Ice Cream with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
*this is the original recipe from the Moosewood Cookbook*
- Doing it a little different in this post… check out the italic questions through out the post and let me know what you think!!