So it’s my last official day off. I used today to prepare for the new year and the new week. Luckily, we had an unseasonably warm day and the recent rain has cleared off my local path. I was able to go for an outdoor run, a little over 6 1/2 miles, which felt great. I hate running on the treadmill, but it’s a must during Chicago winters.
One of my goals for 2011 is to spice up my lunches. I tend to take the same few things each day because they are easy and convenient. I wanted to try some new soup recipes as well. I’ve never had lentil soup or black bean soups before, so I figured I’d give it a shot.
First step, rinsing and draining the red lentils.
I used my Salsa Maker to chop up my onion and red pepper. I’ve never used it before for peppers, but it worked great.
Sauté veggies and add spices.
The soup turned out thicker than expected, which I like. I had a taste tonight and it is delicious. I was surprised to see how yellow my red lentils turned out. I am always learning something new!
Hearty Lentil Soup
From Clean Eating Magazine
1 cup dried red lentils
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 tsp cumin, ground
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, ground
1/4 cup whole-grain or brown rice
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
-Rinse lentils and pick through, discarding any debris or small stones; drain.
-Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper and saute for 5 minutes or until brown. Stir in cumin and red pepper flakes and cook for 1 minute more. Add 4 cups water, lentils, and rice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 20 minutes. Add salt, stir, and cook for an additional 30 minutes. Before serving, stir in lemon juice. Enjoy!
-Leftovers can be kept in a resealable container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Nutrition Facts (per cup)
Total fat: 9 g
Carbs: 41 g
Fiber: 9 g
Sugars: 4.5 g
Protein: 14 g
Sodium: 248 mg
Black Bean Soup
Sauté 1 chopped onion, 1 tbsp cumin and 4 minced garlic cloves in 2 tbsp olive oil.
Add 3 ½ cups low sodium chicken broth (I used 1 container which was 4 cups), 3 chopped tomatoes, one 15-ounce can black beans, and one 1.4-ounce can diced green chile peppers. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer 5 minutes.
Add 1 tbsp snipped fresh cilantro. Garnish with crushed tortilla chips if desired.
This soup turned out a little more watery than I would have expected. It is more of a Mexican soup than a black bean soup, but delicious none the less. It made 8 cups of soup, some for the week and some to freeze.
Nutrition (per 2 cup serving)
Protein: 10 g
Carbohydrates: 34 g
Fat: 11 g
Fiber: 8 g
I recommend this fabulous whole wheat bread recipe to go with your soup. It is easy to make and doesn’t require any yeast.
My lunch bag is packed up and I am ready to get back to work.