Tag Archives: lentil soup

Brrr…. Must…. Make…. SOUP!!!

From the Post-Gazette.com

I love the snow, but commuting in this weather is a bitch. Commuting via public transportation sucks enough in the winter: Walking in the cold, waiting in the cold, sitting on the bus or trolley still feeling cold, then getting off into the cold once more. But add a layer of snow on the ground and things get exponentially worse. Slogging through the snow, trying not to slip and fall, feeling colder, waiting longer, and once you’re on, dreading that eventual plunge back into the winter weather even more.

Curried Lentil Soup from Vegetarian Mama

Commuting back and forth in this kind of weather, it’s no wonder that what I most want to eat is soup. Bowls and bowls and bowls of soup. Warm, hearty, creamy, tantalizing soups. I want to make a giant tank of soup and submerge entirely within it. If I had my way, my crockpot would be going 24/7, always filled with some delicious soup or another. I would eat miso soup as part of my breakfast, some kind of creamy bisque for lunch, and end the day with a giant helping of vegetable soup. You’d look in my fridge and all you would see is Tupperware containers filled with the week’s soups. Then you’d open the freezer and find enough frozen soup for a month. Then you’d probably try to get me some kind of psychiatric help.

 Anyway, because I’m suffering a mild (okay, maybe not so mild) soup fixation, I’ve pulled a couple of tempting recipes for perusal. And if you happen to be strolling down the street with a boiling pot of soup, I happily take soup submissions.
 
– I don’t know what looks better from this post on Marci Gilbert’s Blog: The Vegetable Tortellini Soup or homemade Parmesan Rosemary Crackers to go along with it. Why has it not occurred to me to make homemade crackers? The prep and cooking process seem simple enough, yet I always opt for store-bought. More importantly, why don’t more restaurants offer homemade crackers? It seems like a special feature that would offer that oh-so-important something extra to a dining experience. Anyway, you’ve got me thinking about something beyond soup, Marci, and that’s an achievement in of itself.
 
– Ah, lentils. Delicious, nutritious, cheap, and a favorite of poor Neil on The Young Ones . Neil would probably love the Curried Lentil Soup over at Vegetarian Mama, provided it didn’t end up on the floor. I used to have a problem with lentil soup, because I disliked how the texture made the dish very lumpy and oatmeal-y, but I later learned it all depends on how much stock is used. This recipe seems rather dry, but I don’t think a cup of vegetable stock would ruin the taste. It looks too good to pass up a trial run.
 
– Naomi, I don’t know what it is about your soup, but it’s so… cute. Lovely Little Life serves up a Parsnip Soup with Coconut and Ginger that is both dainty and appetizing. Never had parsnip soup before? Definitely give this recipe a try, as it seems to be a bit more flavorful than the average recipe. Plus, if you use vegan margarine instead of butter, it’s vegan.
 
– Roasted squash, sweet potatoes, shallots, and garlic… Being Suzy Homemaker offers winter refuge in the form of a bowl of creamy soup. The worn out winter commuter couldn’t ask for an easier soup – just roast the veggies, throw in with the other ingredients, blend a bit, and serve hot. Yet another reason to buy an immersion blender.
 
– Okay, so maybe this recipe for Vegan Pho from Kitchen M isn’t something you’re just going to throw together from stuff you already have in your kitchen. Maybe you have no interest in pho that didn’t come from a Vietnamese restaurant. Maybe the thought of toiling for an hour plus over just a soup is enough for you to reach for the nearest take-out menu. But the beautiful photographs alone are worth looking at, and who knows, you might someday have a desire to try something different and a little challenging.
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The Local Food Report: Monday, January 3

Local food news happens all the time, and it’s unbelievable how much you miss if you don’t check out local publications. Recently read something worthwhile? Link it at the bottom!

– It’s been a busy and varied year for Pittsburgh dining, especially when it comes to new restaurants opening up. The PG’s China Millman takes us through the notable openings in 2010. Not a bad place to start if you’re listing restaurants to check out in the new year. (On my list: Salt of the Earth, Spoon, Sababa, Green Pepper, Daphne, and on and on and on…)

– If you checked out the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette‘s previous article on Notion, the new restaurant from Dave Racicot, you might want to read this follow-up on recent developments. The restaurant, scheduled to open today, had 50 reservations for its opening night, but time will tell if this will be the 31-year old  chef’s flight or folly. Chef Racicot is not fooling around. “To err might be human but not in Chef Racicot’s kitchen, even on the first day of business: If you allow people an opportunity to make mistakes just because something is new, he notes, it changes the mindset.”

Need a place Downtown for breakfast or lunch? Deborah Deasy of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review covers the Market Square merging of Prantl’s and Mancini’s. I, for one, am glad to have a Prantl’s post somewhere a little closer to the South Hills. “The pair first joined hands in September 2008 to rent the former Jenny Lee bakery site on Market Square. ‘We were both businesses looking to expand Downtown. Our future landlord introduced us,’ says Nick Mancini Hartner, 32, great-nephew of Jimmy Mancini, who founded Mancini’s Bread Co. in 1929.”

The Penn Avenue Fish Company and the Big Burrito Group get a nice shout out in this piece on nationwide dining from Joan Nathan (for Tablet Magazine). The author made several notable dining stops on her 32-city book tour, but only one city’s chef got to represent with a full recipe. That’s right, Big Burrito’s Chef Bill Fuller.

– Rebecca Sodergren delves into holiday food traditions for the PG’s Food Column, including “Good Luck” foods for New Year’s Day eating. While the event listings are sadly out of date at this point, the lentil soup recipe sounds good enough to make any day of the year.