The last few weeks, I’ve had the time to make a big pot of soup on a Sunday afternoon in order to take to work with me each day.
Soup may seem an odd choice when the temperatures are hovering around 100 degrees, but my air conditioned office can actually make something warm most welcome.
My choice is usually determined by what I have on hand, and the following recipe is no exception. I had a little leftover sausage and some green lentils.
What really made the flavor spark to life was most was the addition of a few fennel seeds, which added a sweetness to balance the acidity of the tomatoes.
Sausage Lentil Soup
1/2 to 3/4 pound sweet Italian sausage
1 large onion, chopped
2 to 3 ribs celery, finely chopped
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 (16-ounce) package dry lentils, rinsed
8 cups water
4 cups chicken broth
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon garlic powder or onion powder
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 tablespoon salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Parmesan cheese, for garnish
Place sausage in a large pot. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Add onion, celery and chopped garlic, and sauté until tender and translucent. Stir in lentils, water, chicken broth and tomatoes. Season with garlic powder, parsley, bay leaves, oregano, thyme, basil, fennel, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Cover, and simmer for 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or until lentils are tender. Top with Parmesan cheese, if desired.
Makes about 1 gallon soup.
Adapted from Allrecipes.com