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Lentil and sausage soup

Even though it’s been in the upper 80s here in Houston, I am DYING to start wearing my fall clothes.  It’s just not cool enough, so instead I’m starting my celebration of fall with homemade soup!

I have been craving the lentil and sausage soup that they serve at Carraba’s.  That soup is amazing, and there are tons of recipes to be found online so you can make your own version at home.  But the thing is that they all have chunks of vegetables in them.  I really hate the texture of most cooked-down veggies.  So I picked a recipe and fixed it.

Any cook can tell you how essential mirepoix is, but what if you hate chunks?  Or chopping?  I’d have carpal tunnel before I got everything chopped to an acceptable size where it wouldn’t squick me.  The answer: blend it!  I threw the zucchini in there because I knew I wouldn’t want to eat that, either.

I ran out of room for the onions on the first pass:

So I added them for the second:

Worst smoothie ever.

That’s a double batch of mirepoix, because the recipe only called for two stalks of celery and I didn’t want a bunch of celery rotting in the fridge.  The bag of carrots had a little more than I needed for two batches, so I used them all.  I really don’t think you could mess this up, since it’s just the base.

I put half in a freezable storage container for the next time I want to make soup:

I don’t think it will be in the freezer for long, though, because Mark went wild over this soup.  It really is delicious!  As for recipe tweaks, there are no measurements given for the spices, so I used a teaspoon of each and added rosemary.  I think it worked great.  You’ll want a lot more than a teaspoon of the red pepper if you want it to be spicy, though.  I bought a 1.2-lb package of sausage, which is more than the recipe calls for, but if you love sausage like we do, go for two packages.  You won’t be sorry!

The best part is that I made the mirepoix a day ahead, so making the soup was super-easy.  Another tip: brown the sausage in the soup pot (before you add the other ingredients) so you don’t lose any fat.  Fat = flavor!

In other news, I brought this home tonight from Toastmasters:

My question was about my biggest challenge.  I talked about trying to fit into my current work environment, which values quite different things than my previous place of employment.  Guess a few people could relate!

4 comments to Lentil and sausage soup

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