Thursday, October 28, 2010

Typhoon Soup!

We may be headed for Dublin, but we still live on Okinawa, and today we are receiving a visit from Typhoon Chaba.  It's been chilly (for Oki) and gloomy for days in the run-up for this storm.  I felt we needed something hot and soothing.  We ate colcannon and heavy, bad-tasting meat loaf for dinner yesterday, so I wanted this to be something lighter and less clunky in the tummy.  Soup, of course, is always an excellent solution for this.

Because we are planning a move, there isn't a whole lot of food in the house, and I've used most of what I bought over the last week for specific, planned meals.  I rooted through the pantry and fridge to see what I could find and just threw everything that looked like a soup ingredient up on the counter.  This is what I came up with, and it was quite good.

This little soup is a simple, spicy, and stick-to-the-ribs meal without being heavy.  I call it Typhoon Soup in honor of the storm which inspired me to make it.  Do try this.  It's lovely.  I made a cornbread to serve alongside.  The slice you see up there in the photo is from my standby 1:29 Project Cornbread recipe.  It just looks different because I used whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose.  It, too, was perfect.  As the ladies on my Irish Mommies board would say, "It went down a treat."

Typhoon Soup
c. 1C Potato, diced
c. 1/2C Celery, diced
c. 1/2C Carrot, diced
c. 1/2C Onion, diced
1/4C Kale, chopped (optional)
1C Lentil Beans
1 Can Tomato Soup
4C Vegetable Broth (I made mine with a bouillon base)
1tsp Garlic Powder
1/3tsp Red Chili Flakes
Salt & Pepper to taste
the Juice from 1/2 of a Lemon (about 1T)


Heat a stew pot over medium heat with about 1T of canola oil.  Toss in the potato, celery, carrot, onion, and lentils.  Stir all of this around until the onions soften up a bit.  Add in the soup and dry spices.  Once that is all mixed and you've taste-tested for spice levels, pour in the broth.  Turn down to simmer and cover your pot.  Let it cook for 30-40 minutes until the lentils soften up.  I don't like my lentils mushy, but if you do, you'll need to let it simmer longer than we did.  Add your lemon juice and do a final taste test for salt and pepper adjustment.  Voila!

**Note of Trivia**
For those who were unaware, whenever you see the abbreviation "c." in a recipe or manual--or anywhere else for that matter--it stands for the word, "circa."  Circa is the Latin word meaning "around."  It literally meant around as in around the circle or looking around, but in English we use the c. to indicate around as in "approximately."  Cheers!

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