I'm sitting at my desk wanting to write, but not exactly sure what to write about it. It's the day I would typically share my weekly meal plan with hopes of inspiring you to organize your dinners for the coming days, but to be honest, are many people really going to adhere to a plan this week?
I've made one, and if you're really interested it consists of the following: two nights worth of soup, one night of fried vegetable rice, a frittata which will allow me to hide use up the vegetables the kids didn't want to eat this week, and lastly, a meal of apple and cheddar paninis with a side of salad. This salad specifically, although I'm fairly certain the boys won't go near it.
As I typed this out I realized that it's mostly a vegetarian meal, which seems perfectly fine to me, although I'm sure Ben will try to convince me to add bacon to something. If the photo below is any indication, he's a little obsessed with all-things pork, and yesterday he was able to sample a chocolate-bacon confection that ellicited few words, but two big thumbs up.
The lack of meat in our plan works well though, as I'm sure we'll get our fill this weekend. Christmas Eve is to be a meal made up of many things, least of which is my annual tourtiere. There is some poultry making an appearance on Christmas Day, and then we eat another holiday meal on the 26th. Yes, I do think the planned vegetarian fare is in order for the coming days, don't you?
Smoky Vegetable and Lentil Soup
This soup was a hit with the kids. Probably more than any other soup I've made so far. It's simple and flavourful and completely nourishing. And while this is meant to be a vegetarian soup, I have made it with bacon as well. To do that, eliminate the olive oil and butter in the recipe, and start the dish by cooking up 1/2 cup chopped bacon. Then continue with steps 2 - 6.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 leeks, washed and thinly sliced
- 2 celery ribs, trimmed and diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 1/2 cups green lentils
- 1 small sweet potato, peeled and diced
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 2 cups water
- Salt and pepper to taste
1. Set a dutch oven over medium-high heat and add the olive oil and butter.
2. Once the butter has melted, add the leeks, celery and carrot and cook until softened but not browned, about 5 minutes.
3. Add the smoked paprika and stir to incorporate in the vegetable mixture.
4. Add the lentils and sweet potato and cover with the vegetable stock and water.
5. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat, cooking for 30 minutes or until the lentils are tender.
6. Season with salt and fresh ground pepper, desired.