Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Better Than Chicken Noodle Soup (Tempeh and Lentil Soup)

3 weeks ago I had had the general icky cold since September
2 weeks ago the common cold stepped it up a notch and sent me home for the weekend
1 week ago I had some sort of flu bug
This week? Sore throat.

After living off of these for a bit...

I decided that cough drops, water, and juice weren't going to cut it.  Something else had to be done to get me out of the sickness rut.  I opened up the cupboards and gathered some ingredients and set out to make a healing soup.  A soup that would replace Chicken Noodle Soup.  I always dreaded being sick because well being sick is no fun.  But even worse than being sick was eating disgusting Chicken Noodle Soup.

My goal today was to make a soup that would ease the pain of getting sick, to make a soup that would almost make getting sick something to look forward to.

What started out as just a simple soup turned into a complete delicious healing lunch.  Just like the one's my mom used to make me, but minutes the icky chicken noodle soup (and steaming my face over a pot of boiling water- I always hated that too!).  You know you've really grown up when you have to make your own lunch of healing goodness when you're sick...

The healing lunch not only had the double action of veggie broth goodness from the soup and a vitamin c boost from the grapefruit.

 But I took it a step further with the patented trifecta healing approach, #1. soup, #2. tea, and last but not least #3. citrus.

The tea and the grapefruit are no brainers...but what in the world did I put in this soup to make it SO delicious?

Better Than Chicken Noodle Soup (Tempeh and Lentil Soup)

4 cups vegetable broth (or use 4 cups water + 4-5 tsp vegetable bullion)
½ cup lentils
2 tbsp olive oil
8 oz. tempeh, cubed (I used wild rice tempeh but plain would work too)
3 cloves garlic, crushed
½ large onion, chopped
2-3 medium carrots, diced
1-2 stalks celery, chopped
2 bay leaves
2 tsp Rosemary
1 tsp oregano
Salt and Pepper to taste

Add lentils, bay leaves, rosemary, and oregano to 4 cups broth. Bring to a boil and then let it simmer on high for about 15 minutes. Meanwhile in a skillet heat olive oil then add the onion, garlic and tempeh. Sauté the mixture until the tempeh has browned slightly and the onions are translucent. When the lentils have cooked for 15 minutes or are almost done, add chopped carrots to broth mixture and finish cooking lentils. (I always add the carrots to soup before the rest of the veggies because they take longer to cook) Then add the celery and the sautéed mixture to the broth and stir. Taste, and add spices to adjust.  Cover and let the soup simmer for 5-10 minutes to really bring out the flavors of the spices.  Enjoy! You should be feeling better in no time.

Of course the tea, soup and grapefruit were wonderful.  But they were even better with a hearty slice of whole wheat bread on the side :)

Really it doesn't get much more comforting than lentil and tempeh in vegetable broth.  I've only recently discovered lentils, but now I know I have really been missing out for 20 years.  And tempeh is like tofu's older brother more sophisticated, complex, and delicious!  I don't think I'll be buying much tofu anymore...

This lunch was gone before I knew it.  I probably could have eaten the entire pot of soup I made.  But since I have grown up I controlled myself, put myself down for a nap, and saved the soup for tomorrow.  I'm sure my poor sore and scratchy throat will thank me during tomorrow's leftover lunch when I don't have to eat leftover Devil's Vegetarian Chili ;)

Do you like chicken noodle soup?

1 comment:

  1. Nin Jiom Pei Pa Koa ( may be another choice. i know alot of people use it, its also non alcoholic, though it\'s effectiveness is not as good as alcohol based cough medicine, but it\'s still good to use on not so serious scratchy throat.

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