|Lemon-lentil soup with mustard greens. © Ryan Schierling|
This was the case for me last Fall when I
Alright, on some level Ryan was right about this being a "throw-together" recipe. It begins with a classic mirepoix and builds simply from there with lentils, mustard greens and fresh lemon juice. It is filling and bright, and leafy greens bathing in a warm broth is one of my favorite ways to eat them. So, while in no way shocking or revolutionary, this has already been made repeatedly in our home and deserves its moment on this blog. Plus, it gives me great joy when food this satisfying is also excellently nutritious and ridiculously economical.
An interesting realization emerged as I gave it some thought to Ryan's question (which I dare not answer here, as today's answer could change tomorrow); many of my favorite soups are graced to some degree with the bright flavor of fresh lemon juice.
Lemon-Lentil Soup with Mustard Greens
1 yellow onion, diced
3 stalks of celery, diced small
2 large carrots, diced small
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 teaspoons organic vegetable Better-than-bullion
8-10 cups water
1 pound brown lentils
1 whole "bunch" mustard greens, chopped – stems removed (or minimum 2 cups)
2 tablespoons basil, dried or fresh
2 tablespoons dried Mexican oregano
Juice of up to 3 lemons (to taste – depends on how large or juicy the lemons)
Salt and pepper to taste
In 5-6 quart pot, sauté the first four ingredients in olive oil until translucent/tender. Dilute Better-than-bullion in water (or use your own or preferred vegetable stock) and add to pot. Sort and rinse lentils and add. Bring up to a simmer and allow to cook for about 20 minutes before adding mustard greens and herbs. Simmer on low heat for another 10-15 minutes, or until lentils are tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and finish with lemon juice (add gradually, to your taste).