Like Josh mentioned in his last post, I am not dead. Many people believed that I had been held captive by a renegade band of turkeys – kind of like the A-Team but with turkeys – that held me captive in an effort to protest the use their kind for Thanksgiving. Though that scenario sounds very exciting, it is not true. The truth is I have been traveling for work and haven’t been near a kitchen to cook anything…and I truly missed it.
But recent travels have taught me something, it’s freakin’ cold up north! So to combat that crappy, cold feeling, I made a little soup that will warm you up to the core. You have to know I tried something a little different with this one. I was watching the show Giada at Home and she mentioned adding her parmesan cheese rinds to a soup to give it a rich flavor (I keep my rinds in the freezer now for this exact reason)…and boy, it did.
Sausage Lentil Soup
3 medium carrots, diced
2 stalks of celery, diced
1 medium onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 pound hot Italian sausage, casing removed
2 cartons of chicken stock
2 cans diced tomatoes
2 cups dried lentils, rinsed
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 bay leaves
In a large stockpot, add sausage to pot and saute over medium-high heat until brown. Remove sausage and set aside.
Add carrots, celery, onion and saute until tender – approx. 4-5 minutes. Add garlic and saute one minute longer. Add salt, pepper, pepper flakes, oregano, thyme, fennel seeds and bay leaves to the veggie mixture and saute for 1 minute to bring out the flavor. Add sausage, tomatoes, lentils, and chicken stock. Mix to combine. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Finally, add your parmesan rinds.
Simmer soup for 45-60 minutes or until lintels are tender. Remove 1/3 of the soup and use either a blender, food processor or hand blender to puree. Add the puree back to the soup thicken it.
Serve with toasted bread and topped with parmesan. If you want a punch of flavor, add a tablespoon red wine vinegar.
Fight back against the crappy cold with this awesome soup. And by the way, if you see a turkey with a mowhawk please get out of his way…he has a bad attitude.