Monday, March 5, 2012

Lentil Soup with Sausage

To celebrate the success of my initial weight loss, I'm sharing this wonderful soup recipe. I have modified it to my liking, keeping in mind that it has to be low points for Weight Watchers. Many of you WW’rs out there will be happy to know this soup is only THREE (yes 3) points per cup. WOW!

The organic players: (there’s celery hidden back there)



The sausage:

sausage

NOTE: for the recipe, the sausage should be a healthier choice such as chicken or turkey. I opt for uncooked sausage. If it's in a casing, remove the casing and saute. Break it apart and brown it, then add it to the soup. If you do not brown the sausage first, it will be mushy and yucky.

Chop all veggies into bite-size pieces:



Saute onion, then add garlic. After browning the sausage, add all ingredients into a large pot.



Mmmmm....looks good already. But just wait....



Two hours later ...



That photo doesn't do it justice. How about this one:



Proof that if a(n) (almost) 4-yr old can eat it...



and not die...



so can you.


Lentil Soup with Sausage

INGREDIENTS:
  • 3/4lb Italian Chicken Sausage (uncooked)**
  • 1T olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 2-3 cloves fresh garlic
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 3 carrots
  • 3 small zucchini
  • 2 cups dry lentils (brown)
  • 2 (14 oz) cans diced tomatoes 
  • 6 cups (48 oz) chicken broth
  • 6 cups water
  • 1T (or more) Italian seasoning (or add separately: basil, oregano, parsley, thyme) to taste
  • 2T tarragon
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
METHOD: 
  • chop the onions, slice the vegetables, mince the garlic using a garlic press
  • heat up a pan with olive oil, add the onions and saute for 2-3 minutes
  • add the garlic, stir continuously so as not to burn the garlic. When you begin to smell the garlic, turn off the heat and add the sauteed onions/garlic to a 6 qt stock pot (4 qt will work too). 
  • brown the sausage using the same saute pan used for the onions (not cleaned or rinsed), draining any fat – altho a healthy chicken sausage will have no fat to drain!
  • add the sausage to the stock pot
  • add water to the saute pan to cook off the bits of sausage left behind and add to pot
  • add all the remaining ingredients except for 1/2 of the water into the stock pot
  • add seasonings; it's especially important to add tarragon since this particular recipe depends upon it – tarragon adds sweetness to the soup
  • turn heat down and allow soup to cook at medium heat for 45 minutes adding the remaining water as necessary
  • this soup will taste better a few hours after you make it; even better the next day


YIELD:
16 cups, 3 points per cup


** If you are not in WW or trying to lose weight, add 1 1/2 lbs of sausage!

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