Thursday Throwback-Why Lentil Soup and Spain go hand in handPosted: December 1, 2011
First of all, can you believe its December already?! 1st day of my chocolate advent calender!
So a couple of days ago I made a batch of Lentil Soup, and it took me back to my month studying abroad in Spain, which I already blogged about a few weeks ago.
But since the trip was so great I decided it would be acceptable to do another brief recap
My host mom Rosa (I wish I got a picture with her) was not the best cook, but would always make us some sort of vegetable “stew” for lunch. Now while I loved this, my roommate Tierney would always joke about how much she despised Rosa’s vegetable soup creations.
this picture makes me laugh haha..tierney is on the far left and I’m next to her..this was the ONE time we got food late night at Kabob King..I don’t even know what I ate but all I know is that it tasted like heaven
Anyways back to Rosa..a lot of the vegetable soups she made us had lentils in them. I didn’t think I liked lentils until I started eating Rosa’s soups because I welcomed them as some of the few vegetables I ate while in Spain. I also ate more oranges in Spain than I ever have in my life..
Rosa (my host mom) would always ask me (in spanish mind you) if I was vegetarian because a lot of the time the “meat” she served us was undistinguishable and it freaked me out a little bit..I would also sometimes tell her I wasn’t that hungry if I really didn’t want to eat what she was serving as I inhaled 4 oranges in one sitting..I think she was a little confused by this
One night in particular the dinner she served us was literally inedible..pasta drowned in oil, with chopped deli ham, and marinara sauce on top..when I saw this on my plate I LITERALLY freaked out! Dramatic of me? definitely
So since I refused to eat this creation of hers (and Tierney’s feeling was pretty much mutual), we knew we couldn’t throw it out in our small trash can because the next day she would ask us if we didn’t like the dinner..this happened on more then one occasion
So I went and got a shopping bag from my room, and we dumped our meals in the shopping bag, brought them outside and threw them in the dump (mind you we were also laughing hysterically..who does what we did? no one..I feel bad thinking about it now but at the time is was pretty hilarious)..thanks to Tierney the picture above documents this..I totally forgot we took a picture of this until she reminded me just now and sent me the picture..thanks tierney!
Then we went to a restaurant on the corner and got Boccadilos for dinner that looked something like this
I would just get plain manchego cheese and bread, carbs and cheese=great combination
So now that my story telling is over, I’ll give you the recipe for Lentil Soup
Here’s how you make it
In a soup pot, put in 2 tbsp olive oil, and add in chopped onion, carrots, celery and 2 cloves of garlic. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes
After 5 minutes add in 1 tbsp italian seasoning, salt and pepper
Then add in the dry lentils (I used about 2 cups) and add in 6 cups of liquid ( I used a mix of chicken stock and water)
Then cover the pot, bring the soup to a boil, and reduce the heat to simmer for about an hour until the lentils are tender
Easy peasy lentil soup squeasy! I realize it doesn’t look all that beautiful..but I promise it tastes a WHOLE lot better
Here’s the full recipe
Servings: 6-8 large bowls
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour and 20 minutes
3 large carrots, peeled and chopped
1 large onion, roughly chopped
3 celery, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp italian seasoning
2 cups dry lentils
4 cups chicken broth (or vegetable broth) + 2-3 cups water
salt to taste
2 tbsp olive oil
Instructions: Bring a soup pot to medium high heat. Add in 2 tbsp olive oil, chopped garlic, onion, carrots and celery. Cook for 5 minutes until onions are translucent. Add in the italian seasoning and lentils. Add in the chicken broth and water and bring soup to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover pot, and cook for an hour, stirring occasionally.
This soup doesn’t taste quite like Rosa’s creations, but it definitely reminds me of all the fun times I had in Spain.
If you’re in college and debating studying abroad, or just thinking about planning a trip abroad in general, my advice DO IT. I promise it will be beyond worth it!
Like I said before..take me back NOW. Last year around this time I was so anxious about going abroad for a month with a group of strangers, but if I could go back and do the trip all over again with the same group of people, I would in a second. GAH. Take me back now please please please!
I realize this has been a really long post, and if you’re still with me thanks, you’re a trooper.
I hope everyone has a great day!