Chorizo, Lentil and Vegetable Soup

When I can’t decide what I want for dinner, or if I’m not particularly hungry, I almost invariably turn to soup. I just love it – especially the broth kinds.

Today was one of those indecisive days – I didn’t have a clue what I wanted, and I wasn’t feeling hungry or inspired, so looking through my (way too many) cookbooks and saved recipes didn’t float my boat.

So I did what never fails – I trawled my My Fitness Pal recipe collection to see what looked good and had a decent amount of calories and macros – basically, I let nutrition make the decision for me. After scrolling for what seemed forever, this recipe, from Smitten Kitchen, jumped out at me when nothing else looked even mildly interesting.

Of course, I had changed everything in it when I put it into MFP months and months ago. No oil instead of 1/3 of a cup of it, Chorizo instead of sausage meat, baby spinach instead of chard, chicken stock instead of water, and I threw in a zucchini, too. I knew the sum of the parts were good, so I just hoped for the best.

Which is exactly what I got. A flavoursome, complex, delicious, nutritious filling and textured soup that had all of us eating in almost complete silence. I made garlic bread using bread rolls I had laying around, and while they were delicious, the soup is more than able to hold its own, too. The servings are generous, too. The recipe yields six servings for 238 calories per serves, and by ‘serves’, I definitely mean ‘full bowls’.

Ingredients

180g chorizo, sliced into small coins

1 onion, diced

2 medium carrots, peeled and diced

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

400g tin brown lentils, drained and rinsed

800g tinned tomatoes

2 bay leaves

Salt and pepper, to taste

6 cups chicken stock


1 medium zucchini, diced

60g baby spinach

4tbs grated parmesan cheese, to serve

Method

  1. In a large saucepan, cook chorizo over medium-high heat for 5 minutes, until golden.
  2. Lower heat, and add onion, carrots and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes until vegetables have softened.
  3. Stir in lentils, tomatoes and bay leaves, and season well.
  4. Add chicken stock, and bring to the boil. Turn heat down to medium, and simmer for 20 minutes, until lentils are soft but not mushy.
  5. Tumble zucchini into soup and cook for 3 minutes, until zucchini is tender. Add spinach and remove from heat as soon as it wilts (within 30 seconds or so).
  6. Ladle soup into bowls, being careful to remove the bay leaves. Serve with extra pepper and topped with parmesan cheese.

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