Saturday, February 21, 2009

Ripping Lentil Soup

By far my favorite episode of the Simpsons is when Lisa becomes a vegetarian. Toward the end of the show, during the falling action, Lisa finds a trap freezer in the Kwik-E-Mart. This 'magic tunnel' brings her to the roof of the store where Apu, Paul and Linda McCartney are hanging out. Turns out Paul, Linda and Apu are all vegetarians too. They are supportive of Lisa's decision, and Paul lets Lisa in on a little secret. If you play "Maybe I'm Amazed" backwards you'll hear a recipe for a "really ripping lentil soup". Well, although this was probably my inspiration, I got the actual recipe from Mark Bittman's "How to Cook Everything". I liked the look of the original recipe, but he also had a variation that subbed roasted garlic for the aromatics. I couldn't decide which to do, but I do love garlic, so I added some roasted cloves to the onion/carrot/celery mixture. I also added a little lemon juice for some acidity. The soup was really easy and straightforward...especially since the boyfriend recently bought me a vegetable peeler. I know that this is probably the most essential cooking tools that even college student posses in their grimy apartments kitchens...and I always intended to get one, I just always forgot!
I made this on a Saturday morning after a long and stressful week. Something about chopping veggies makes me relax, and just makes me happy -- Look at those perfectly diced pieces of carrot! The peeler rocked by world. It made soup prepping so much faster.
Here is the soup simmering in the pot. It was very good, but really plain too. I think next time I make it, it needs a little something extra. Maybe some curry powder or smoked paprika?

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