But be sure to buy red lentils. They do NOT require soaking and cook up quickly.
Red Lentil Soup
1 cup red lentils, rinsed
5 and 1/2 cups water
1 large onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped, plus leaves
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sumac (found in the Mediterranean food section of the grocery store)
1 teaspoon ground cumin seed OR 1 teaspoon celery seed
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Combine all ingredients. Cook covered over low heat about 2 hours. Yield: 3-4 servings. Freezes well.
I made this hearty soup for a friend yesterday. He had been out in the cold and was glad to be warmed and nourished by this vegetarian— even vegan—soup. We ate it with cornbread from the freezer. (Fortunately, my freezer is always filled with a number of carbohydrate goodies of the gluten-free variety.) We enjoyed this lentil soup so much that there were only about one and one-half servings left to freeze. But I’ll be glad to see this soup again on a night when I don’t have time to cook.
So get ready to chop a few vegetables and end up with a warm lunch or dinner soup that will warm you thoroughly. And feel free to experiment. The first time I made this soup, I added celery seed, but yesterday, I could not locate that spice. I substituted ground cumin. Next time, I might try adding both. No matter what, this recipe is one you will come back to again and again.