Recipe

Creamy Lentil Soup with Wheaty Croutons

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Recipe Information

Total Time: 1 hour, 25 minutes active
Servings: 4

Lentil soup is always comforting and substantial, and when you puree it, it seems even more so. The carrots, potatoes and celery melt into a thick, herby soup, which is perfect with a crunchy topping of crisp croutons. This recipe makes extra croutons, you will have about 2 cups left to use in salads, on other soups, and on casseroles.

Ingredients

Soup

  • 1 cup lentils, rinsed
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 1 medium potato, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • 4 sprigs fresh basil, for garnish

Croutons

  • 5 cups cubed rustic whole wheat bread
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • cracked black pepper

Preparation

  1. Soup: In a 4 quart pot, combine the lentils and water and put over high heat to bring to a boil. Chop the veggies and add them as the lentils start to cook. Add garlic, salt and oregano and reduce to simmer for 40 minutes, covered. Check halfway to stir and see if it needs more water. When the lentils are soft and falling apart, remove the pot from the heat. Puree the lentils in a processor or blender, or with a stick blender in the pan. Stir in dijon mustard and serve hot, with fresh basil sprigs.
  2. Croutons: Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Measure the bread cubes and pile on a baking sheet with a rim. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle with thyme, salt and cracked pepper, then toss to mix. Bake for 35-40 minutes, stirring halfway. The croutons should be crisp and dry. Cool on racks until completely cool, then transfer to an airtight container.
  3. Serve 1 cup of soup with half a cup of croutons and a basil sprig.

Nutritional Information

422 calories, 3 g. fat, 0 mg. cholesterol, 595 mg. sodium, 62 g. carbohydrate, 10 g. fiber, 17 g. protein