Today was one of those great winter days when the snow is still all white and sparkly and gorgeous. The traffic on our country road was almost nonexistent. It was only about 20, but the icy white reflecting the sun made it feel warmer. I took the little babydawg out on the leash several times and she frolicked and ran and dove into the snowbanks...it's getting almost impossible to keep her still. Lucy is our m,iddle dog, she's a lab mix, and she loves the cold. The little Jack Russell Terrorist--not so much.
It seemed like the perfect day for a hearty soup for supper. I knew I could throw the ingredients for a tasty herb bread on the bread machine, start the soup, and then do the rest of my housekeeping. So--here's what I did:
2 cups lentils
water to cover
1/2 tsp fresh ground salt
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
5-7 garlic cloves, peeled and cut in half.
2 bay leaves
chicken broth (I freeze it by the pint and use it for soup stock)
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
1 carrot, chopped
1/2 onion, diced
Today I had some leftover bbq'd country ribs, so I cubed the meat and threw that in too. You could use ham or sausage or no meat at all.
I put this all in the crockpot and cooked it on high for about 5 hours. I did add a little more water at some point, but not much. I like my lentils thick and hearty, you might like yours more soupy.
Lentils are a great source of cholesterol lowering fiber, and they have a low glycemic index. They also have good to excellent amounts of 6 important minerals, 2 B-vitamins, amino acids and protein. As you can see, they're really little nutritional powerhouses.
There was a recipe for an Italian herb bread in the book that came with my bread machine, so I got that going as well. It was pretty basic, and spiced with oregano, basil, summer savory, grated paremsan cheese and minced garlic.
Then I saw some apples in the fruit bowl that looked like they were getting soft, so I washed and sliced them and made an impromptu apple crisp for dessert. Served it warm with a dollop of whipped cream on top.
Mmmmmmm....Bon Apetit, baby!