The following post has been written by Steph from The Cheapskate Cook:
If you joined Jessica on her recent Pantry Challenge, you probably learned a lot about your freezer and pantry stash – what you keep on hand, what you keep too much of, and what got lost in the freezer sometime last April.
One of my favorite meals to build out of pantry and freezer staples is soup, and since I’ve been gearing up to explore all things soup on The Cheapskate Cook, this particular recipe was a fabulous find.
Egyptian Lentil Soup is mostly made of basic “real” foods that are easy to keep around for awhile and inexpensive to buy. I adapted the recipe to use butter or olive oil, added some cumin per the suggestion of another cook, and threw in a few handfuls of chopped spinach for some extra nutrition. Garnishing it with shredded cheddar really took this delightfully simple and flavorful soup over the top.
- 1/4 cup butter or olive oil
- 4 rib celery (1 cup chopped)
- 3 carrots (1 cup sliced)
- 1/2 onion (1/2 cup chopped)
- 2 clove garlic minced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup dried lentils
- 2 cup vegetable broth or chicken stock
- 1 tomato peeled and chopped
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp salt or to taste
- 3 cup baby spinach finely chopped and loosely packed (can also use cooked kale since it’s usually in season during the winter
- 1 oz cheddar cheese, shredded for garnish (1/4 cup)
- In a large saucepan melt butter. Add vegetables, garlic and bay leaf, sauté until vegetables are tender. Add lentils, chicken stock, tomato, pepper, and cumin to vegetable mixture. Pour enough water into saucepan to cover. Simmer until lentils are tender, approximately 30 minutes.
- Add spinach (or kale) and salt, and cook on low for 5-10 minutes, until spinach has wilted.
- Optional: Pour hot soup into a blender and puree.
- Serve immediately and garnish with cheddar cheese.
Promptly store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for up to 4 days.
Nutritional values are approximate and based on 1/4 the recipe. Does not include cheese garnish.
— When Steph and her husband got married, they lived in a renovated shed and had a grocery budget that matched. As a passionate whole-foodie, Steph was determined to continue eating healthy, minimally-processed foods on their shoestring budget. So The Cheapskate Cook was born.