Thursday, May 01, 2008

Lentil Soup IV

Since I became a professional sunbather, I have had time to indulge in one of my favorite pastimes; cooking! I am really not that great in the kitchen, I tend to create lots of cooking related disasters (just ask my roommates), but I do have one thing going for me, and that is creativity. I LOVE to alter recipes and see how they turn out when I make little additions and changes. Using Fitday, I can enter in all of the ingredients of a recipe, and each time I cook something, I get an idea of what the nutritional stats for it are.

Swayzie and I have been talking about using dry lentils, and how they are incredibly good for you (rather than canned, which almost always have exorbitant amounts of sodium). They seemed really difficult to use and I didn't really know where to start. Then one of my favorite bloggers, angry chicken, did a post about lentils and made it sound like they really aren't that scary so I decided to give them a try.

I used and typed in lentils. I browsed through the results until I found one that looked like it would work for me. I have never used plantains before, but I think I like them. I was worried they would give a "banana" taste to the soup but they have a nice texture. I love it because it reminds me of the soup that my Grandma Lu always has sitting on the stove when I go over to her house. Now if only I could let myself indulge in saltines covered in butter like she let me do when I was younger :) If you end up making it, let me know how it turned out for you. Expect many more posts related to my cooking adventures.

Please note that this recipe is a conglomeration of what the original person suggested and what I ended up doing. Of course I recommend modifying as desired.


  • Appx 4 quarts water
  • 3 lbs cooked lentils
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 large tomatoes, diced
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 6 med. red potatoes, diced
  • 16 oz baby carrots
  • 2 plantains, sliced
  • 4 oz mushrooms
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. I cooked the lentils the day before. Just follow the directions on the back of the bag, soaking them overnight and then boiling them for around 1 1/2 hours.
  2. Fill a large pot with water and stir in the olive oil and salt. Bring to a boil.
  3. Add potatoes, carrots, garlic, and plantains into boiling water. Boil for about 15 minutes.
  4. Add mushrooms, tomato, onion, and let simmer for about 45 minutes.
  5. I added spices on hand such as garlic and onion, season with salt and pepper.
Yields just under 8 quarts. If cooking for one (not for 2 boys and myself like I am), definitely halve the recipe.

Nutritional Information

Serving: 1 cup

Calories: 141
Fat: 5 g
Sat Fat: 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat:1g
Monounsaturated Fat: 3g
Sodium: 122g
Potassium:503 mg
Carbohydrates: 21g
Dietary Fiber: 5g
Protein: 5g
Vitamin A: 46%
Vitamin C: 24%
Folate: 23%

Things to Note:

  • Nutritional Information is approximate, however it is based completely upon the ingredients as a whole, not stats that were given to me by someone else. I believe them to be very accurate.
  • This is a vegetarian chili, but you won't even miss the meat!
  • 3 cups of this gave me 15 grams of fiber, that is hard to beat for less than 500 calories
  • I added my garlic cloves whole, and it wasn't a pleasant experience when I accidentally ate one. If you don't love garlic, try dicing or grating it in.
Buon Appetito!


Court said...

Your soup just made me incredibly hungry! :-) And of course it's ok that you add me to your blogroll!

Megan Smith said...

jenna this looks AMAZING! Way to go. a few things I must say...
1- Professional Sunbathing. Something I hope to aspire to!
2- I remember a certain someone saying "Lentils...megan honestly who even uses lentils..." hmmmm...
3- Send pics of the dress asap!!

Jenna said...

Court-Definitely give it a try. It wasn't too difficult, and it's all I want to eat lately!

meggie-You already are a professional sunbather. Tanner than anyone I know. I will admit I was wrong, everyone should be using lentils, you are such a genius. And dress pics coming as soon as I can find someone to help me try it on!

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