When I got home from work tonight I felt kind of sad that my husband wasn’t going to be home for dinner and I didn’t have anyone to cook for. I was toying with the idea of hitting up the food cart pod near our house when the dog started whining to be let outside. I opened up the front door and found a package from Amazon addressed to me (!!)
I LOVE getting things in the mail. I think it all started last year when we registered for wedding gifts and packages started arriving at the house. Now, these packages full of amazing kitchen utensils, towels, and small appliances weren’t coming from our friends and family. They were coming from me. It is embarrassing to admit, but I am a *little* bit impatient.
I had followed the “guidelines” for such things and registered just a few months after we go engaged. The problem with that was I had many, many months to become attached to all of the objects on the registry, and over the weeks I found myself in need of some of the items. One by one, boxes from Macy’s and Amazon found their way to our house containing “necessary” items such as a butter dish, a gravy boat, and a bath mat (in green, of course).
It was even worse after the wedding – we received so many amazing and generous gifts from our loved ones, yet I had a nagging feeling like I had abandoned those poor, sad items that been picked over at the store. Back we went to Macy’s, where we completed our Fiesta-ware collection, picked up some more Pyrex, and brought home my oh-so-beautiful green stand mixer (which wasn’t even on our registry to begin with). As I write this post I may or may not have a separate browsing tab open logged into our (still) active registry at Macy’s.
Like I said, I have a problem.
So back to the Amazon box I found on my doorstep: I was so excited I let out a weird high-pitched squealing sound which freaked out the dog. I brought the box inside to discover that it was a gift from my parents in celebration of receiving my M.B.A. (THANKS, MOM & DAD!). Inside I found a creme brulee torch (hallelujah!), a mango splitter (which I already have BIG plans for), and a (green) immersion blender. I did a little jig in my kitchen to celebrate my bounty and then started tearing open the package containing the immersion blender.
I skipped over to the fridge and pantry and pulled out lentils (I’m on a lentil kick lately, so sue me), garlic, carrots, an onion, a yellow pepper, and some Moroccan spices and went to work.
Into a pot went some oil, garlic, carrots, and onion and under the broiler went the yellow pepper. Next came the lentils and the Moroccan spices (nutmeg, cumin, coriander, allspice, ginger, cayenne, and cinnamon)…
At this point I noticed some smoke coming out of the back of my stove and thought, huh, that’s weird – OH NO THE PEPPERS!
Don’t worry, the peppers were fine. Just a little charred, which is what I was going for anyway. I chopped them up, added them to the mix, and brought the whole mixture and a few cups of water to a boil. I let it simmer until the lentils were practically mush and the carrots could be mashed with a fork, then used the immersion blender to puree it into a creamy soup.
Okay, I know you’re probably looking at this picture thinking that it is the ugliest soup you’ve ever seen, and you probably aren’t wrong. Soup is notoriously hard to photograph, but you’ll just have to trust me that this DOES taste good! I’m thinking next time I might go with red lentils and red pepper instead of brown lentils and yellow pepper to try to get a better color. Maybe a bit of paprika and turmeric will help it out as well!
What’s that? The beautiful glass of breathtaking yumminess posing behind the soup? Oh that’s just some homemade Moroccan Mint Tea. I drank FOUR glasses of this stuff and then couldn’t sleep from all the sugar. I’ll post the recipe sometime over the next few days.
Here’s the recipe:
Makes: 4 servings
- 1 cup lentils
- 2 carrots, finely chopped
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 bell pepper, quartered
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp. oil
- 1 Tbsp. Moroccan Spices, or to taste
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- 3 cups of water
- Place your quartered bell pepper on a baking sheet and place under your oven’s broiler for 3-5 minutes on high, turning once or twice. Once roasted, remove from oven and chop.
- Meanwhile, heat a 3-quart or larger dutch oven over medium-high heat and add your oil. Saute garlic for 30 seconds or until fragrant, then add your carrots and onion. Let cook for 3-4 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add chopped roasted bell pepper to the mixture.
- Stir in your lentils and Moroccan spices and stir to combine. Let cook for 60 seconds, stirring occasionally, to toast the spices.
- Add your water and bring the contents to a boil. Let boil for 2-3 minutes, then reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, for 20-25 minutes or until lentils are very soft (they may break out of their skins). Check the lentils about 15 minutes in to see if they need more water.
- Using an immersion blender (or a regular blender), puree the contents until creamy and smooth. You may need to add more water to get this the right consistency – you want it to be a soup, not re-fried lentils!
- Taste and adjust seasonings and salt. Serve with Moroccan Mint Tea and garlic bread (seriously, don’t skimp on the garlic bread!)
Nutrition (per serving):
83 calories, 4 g. fat, 3 g. protein, 12 g. carbs, 2 g. fiber. WW PointsPlus: 2