Lentil soup with chard

This was sent to me from member Joanna. She says, “It is a great soup recipe which allows me to put up some of the beautiful chard and early carrots to enjoy all winter long.  I was just today enjoying a bowl and thought I should pass it along, either for you or the blog.  I hope you find it interesting! ”

Thanks Joanna!

Maha’s Lentil Soup

Preparation Time: 60 minutes
Start to Finish Time: 90 minutes
Yield: 8 servings

My sister-in-law, Maha Tawil-Copps, is a great cook and comes from a family of great cooks, including her mother, three sisters, and sister-in-law Gemma. Every meal she’s ever prepared for me, mostly traditional foods from her native Syria, is a feast for the senses. She’s an instinctive cook and an artist by training. “I’ve tried to follow recipes, but I just can’t,” she says. “I cook by balance, not measuring cups.” This soup — a traditional dish from Syria and Lebanon — is one of the simpler acts from her amazing repertoire. Maha once tried using spinach as a substitute for the Swiss chard but vows, “Never again — it was terrible,” although she admits that my mom and Aunt Ginny loved it. One more thing — and this is important: “Squeeze the lemons over the soup only after you’ve ladled it into the bowl. If the juice sits in the soup too long, or you reheat it, it ruins everything.”

  • 4 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 6 to 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons dry coriander
  • 1 pound dry lentils, rinsed and picked through
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons cumin
  • 1 tablespoon kosher or sea salt
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard, stems removed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1/4 pound vermicelli or angel hair pasta, broken into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 fresh lemons
  • Fried pita chips or unseasoned croutons

In a large soup pot over medium-high heat, sauté onions in 1/2 cup oil until translucent. Add carrots and garlic and cook 2 to 3 minutes. Add coriander, stir well to coat vegetables, and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add lentils and stir well to coat. Add water to cover the ingredients by 3 inches (about 8 cups). Stir in cumin. Cook about 30 minutes, or until lentils are al dente (softened, but not completely cooked). Season with approximately 1 tablespoon salt. Add Swiss chard and cook about 10 minutes. Remove 1 cup of broth and whisk in flour, then whisk back into soup pot.

In a sauté pan over medium-high heat, cook pasta in 1 tablespoon oil until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add pasta to soup and cook about 8 minutes. Ladle into bowls and squeeze about 1 tablespoon of lemon juice over each serving. Serve with pita chips or croutons.



About stillmansfarm

Stillman's Farm® is a family owned farm in Massachusetts. We currently operate at two locations: a greenhouse/retail business in Lunenburg, and the majority of vegetable production in New Braintree. Glenn Stillman started the business in Lunenburg over 20 years ago and now enjoys the promise of the next generation further expanding the very diverse enterprise. The farm also has several Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs established in Boston, Lunenburg, Jamaica Plain, Brookline, New Braintree and the Southborough/Framingham area. In addition, the Stillman's trucks have become a fixture at the Boston Area Farmer's Markets. Our Philosophy Most of Stillman's produce is grown without chemicals. For a few crops this simply is not feasible. For these particular crops, we participate in the State Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program. This entails systematic scouting of fields, protection of beneficial insects, bio-controls, and well-timed applications of only the safest pesticides. With growing concern about genetically modified organisms (GMO), as a patron you can be confident that none of the produce we grow have been engineered, in fact, we often experiment with many heirloom varieties! Conscientiously Grown® The combination of no pesticides, good cultivation management, and IPM practices allows us to offer the widest possible selection of fruit and vegetable varieties and be a thriving sustainable farm. We have developed our own label, "conscientiously grown" to convey our commitment to the safety of our environment, family and customers. All of our hormone free, pasture raised meats carry a conscientiously grown label too!
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