Wondering what to do with the fresh spinach and bundle of green onions that were irresistible buys at the market? Combine them with broccoli, bacon, and red wine vinegar to create a full-flavoured lentil soup for a lunchtime meal or a side dish at dinner.
No presoaking is necessary for dried lentils, and the bacon doesn’t have to be fried prior to cooking, which makes for an easy soup to prepare. Lentils also add depth and an earthy flavour while being a perfect protein source.
Midwest Lentil Soup
• 4 large scallions, sliced
• 2 garlic cloves, diced
• 3 bacon slices, cut small bite-size pieces
• 4-5 mushrooms, sliced
• Small broccoli head, cut into bite-size pieces
• 25 ml (2 tbsp) olive oil
• 1 L (4 cups) water
• 250 ml (1 cup) dried green lentils, rinsed
• 398 ml (14-oz) can diced tomatoes (my preference with basil, oregano, & garlic)
• 5 ml (1 tsp) dried basil
• 2 ml (1/2 tsp) dried oregano
• 500 ml (2 cups) fresh spinach, devein and torn into pieces
• 7 ml (1 ½ tsp) red wine vinegar
• Salt and pepper to taste
Step 1: Prepare scallions, garlic, bacon, mushrooms, and broccoli.
Step 2: In soup pan or Dutch oven, heat oil on medium, add scallions, garlic and bacon, and cook until slightly browned.
Step 3: Add broccoli, water, lentils, tomatoes, basil, and oregano. Bring to a boil, then simmer with the lid on the pot for 30-35 minutes until the lentils are done (don’t overcook).
Step 4: Prepare the spinach while the lentils are simmering. When the lentils are done, add the spinach, vinegar, salt, and pepper, and stir. Let sit until spinach wilts. Enjoy!
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