Recipe of the Week: Ham and Lentil Stew, by L.H.

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We’re expecting an “Arctic blast” soon and this is the soup I’m preparing to help keep us warm. While there is some slicing-and-dicing involved, the lentils cook up quickly enough that you can have it on the table in under an hour and a half. Earthy, healthy, comforting, and a little different, I think you’ll like it. Plain ol’ saltine crackers are a perfect accompaniment, though chunks of warmed crusty bread will definitely kick it up a notch.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 ½ c. cooked diced ham
  • ¾ – 1 c. chopped onions (about 1 small onion)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cans (14.5 oz. ea.) chicken broth
  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced
  • 1 c. lentils, any kind
  • 1 ½ c. thinly-sliced cabbage
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • ¼ tsp. thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ tsp. black pepper

Directions:

  1. In large soup pot, heat oil over medium heat.
  2. Sauté ham and onions, stirring often, for 5-6 minutes.
  3. Add garlic and stir 1 minute more.
  4. Add rest of ingredients.
  5. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 1- 1 ¼ hours, stirring occasionally, until lentils are done.
  6. Remove bay leaf before serving.

Makes 6 servings.

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