Perhaps it’s unusual to be cooking up soup in the summer, but I was tired of making just chicken or salmon and pairing it with other food groups. Soup, on the other hand, is a great way to get all of your nutrients in one pot!
I’m a little tired of soup now that I’ve eaten it for two or three weeks straight though…but I thought I’d share what I made because it was so delicious!
Today I am reviewing for you two soups: a vegan lentil and veggie soup from The Minimalist Baker and a Portuguese soup from Rachael Ray’s old show, 30-Minute Meals.
Let’s get started!
1. The Minimalist Baker’s 1-Pot Everyday Lentil Soup
The reason I decided to make this recipe was due to the whole bag of lentils I had from the last dish I made! Plus, the recipe was simple enough because it used spices I had and it also called for common soup ingredients such as celery, carrots, and potatoes. I actually had leftover celery from buying it to eat as a snack, and it was going to go bad. My grandma is a big fan of using leftovers and whatever is going to go bad in a delicious soup. It’s much better to repurpose it and eat it than to throw it away!
The lentils were the main ingredient, so here’s a picture of the green lentils I had so you can see what they look like. Apparently, you don’t need to soak them, you just need to rinse them. Without soaking, they take a while to cook. It’s not like an hour or anything, but it takes a little longer than pasta to cook. Lentils have way more nutritional value than pasta though, so I think it’s worth it!
All you need to do is sautee the garlic, onions, carrots, and celery for a little bit with some salt and pepper. Then you add the potatoes, veggie broth, and season it all a little more. Once the broth is boiling, you add the lentils and simmer until the lentils soften. Once the lentils soften, you can add greens. I added kale because that was what the recipe called for and I don’t ever cook with kale. One time I tried making kale chips, but I overseasoned them and burned them…it was a sad time.
Below is a picture of what it looks like when it’s finished! It smelled so good and my parents were fans. My mom had gotten a sinus infection from sleeping in her dusty room from the construction, so she really appreciated the comforting and soothing properties of a healthy soup.
This recipe was definitely a favorite! I can easily see myself making this a staple in my diet, especially when it gets chillier outside. It has protein, veggies, and healthy starch!
I think what really made me love this recipe was the suggestion to add rosemary and thyme to the broth. I’ve never cooked with fresh rosemary or thyme before, but I learned that the aromas and flavors are divine. I didn’t use all of the fresh herbs that I had bought so I have been using them in tea to alleviate menstrual cramps. I’ll add that recipe another time!
The only somewhat negative thing I have to say about this recipe isn’t really negative but I feel like it took longer to cook than the recipe stated. Granted, I may not have been following the boiling directions properly.
The issue was that I feel like the lentils took longer than 20 minutes to become tender. As I mentioned in my previous lentil recipe post, I had undercooked the lentils before, so when I cooked them this time, I waited until they were very soft. This took more than 20 minutes for me, but perhaps with soaking them, it would take less time. I haven’t tried soaking lentils yet.
Since I cooked the soup for longer than the recipe called for, a lot of the broth evaporated, as you can see in the picture above. I only had one box of broth though (I used Rachael Ray’s veggie broth), so the soup was more like a…stew. Which was perfectly fine to me, but next time I’ll be buying two boxes of broth to make this soup.
2. Rachael Ray’s Portuguese Chourico and Kale Soup
I had a ton of leftover kale (pretty much 1lb of kale), so I found this soup recipe which called for kale! I also had leftover potatoes, which were needed for this recipe. The only ingredient I had to buy was chourico and chicken broth.
This recipe required less preparation than The Minimalist Baker one because I only had to chop up the potatoes and chorizo, whereas the other one I had to peel and cut the carrots, cut the celery, cut the potatoes, etc. In the video of this recipe, Rachael Ray literally throws everything into the pot, which I felt was very accurate. I recommend watching the video by the way because it’s such an old video of her, it’s great!
Doesn’t the picture above look fantastic?! It smelled and tasted as good as it looks too. Anyway, this recipe was simple. You saute the onions and potatoes, then once those ingredients are cooked a little, you add the garlic, bay leaves, and all the kale. I left about two handfuls of kale in the bag to use for omelets.
Once the kale wilts, which took longer than 2 minutes for me probably because the stove was too low, but once that did happen, I added the canned garbanzo beans, which I rinsed unlike what she does in the video, tomatoes, and broth. I didn’t have canned tomatoes so I just chopped up two fresh tomatoes. Once again, I used Rachael Ray’s broth, but I used her chicken one this time.
Once the potatoes are cooked, you are done!
I was the only one that ate this soup, so I can’t speak on how anyone else felt about it, but I loved it! I’ve never had soup with chorizo before but I loved it because it added heat that most soups I’ve eaten lack. It was also more filling than the previous soup because the protein wasn’t just lentils. This soup had chickpeas, which are super filling, and chorizo, thus it was a more well-rounded meal for me!
I will just say that the original recipe called for waxy potatoes, which I did not use so that may have allowed the cooking time to be about 30 minutes for me. Instead, I used the regular baking potatoes that I had bought for the vegan soup recipe, which were soft even when raw. I also did not peel the potatoes for this recipe because who has time for that??
I made the same mistake I made previously with the insufficient amount of broth in this recipe too, despite making it several days later and realizing my initial mistake! The reason I made this one wrong too was that the recipe specifically called for one quart of broth, so that’s what I bought. Again, always get another container of broth, unless you don’t mind stew-ish soups.
The last thing I have to say about this recipe is that it required you remove the casing from the chorizo. I didn’t do this and I don’t think Rachael did it in the video, but if casing bothers you, feel free to do it.
So, that’s it for me on soups! I am definitely taking a break from the soup world for a bit, but when I do want more soup, I can reheat the leftover Portuguese soup I stored in the freezer.
Do you enjoy soup in the summer? What is your favorite soup recipe? Tell me in the comments below!
I feel when people write about recipes, it’s primarily because they want you to try the recipe. Unfortunately, that is not the case with this recipe that I’m about to share with you all the details about.
Please heed the warning: do not make this recipe at home!
I was inspired to make ground turkey because one of my friends prefers it to cooking chicken. In fact, she has never made chicken because she’s afraid to handle the raw meat. I felt similarly until my mom taught me before I moved into my apartment, but anyway…
I was sick of eating chicken all the time so I thought that I should try out ground turkey. My mom isn’t a fan of ground turkey so I’ve never really had it before, and I now understand why.
This slideshow feature must be relatively new, I’m pretty excited to use it for my food blog!
Anyway…this will be the last food blog of the summer. I hope to continue cooking when the semester starts, but it may be even less frequent than how often I’m cooking now (I haven’t cooked in about three weeks. Part of that is due to the fact that I traveled for two weeks but…I’ve been home for awhile and I haven’t made anything yet).
I actually didn’t make this; my mom made it for the Fourth of July and I thought it was too aesthetically pleasing (and delicious!) not to share! I believe my mom found the recipe on Facebook and all it is is watermelon cut into the shape of stars with mozzarella cheese, and arugula sandwiched in between two watermelon slices. Then balsamic glaze is drizzled on top to add some acidity. She used a cookie cutter for this, although I’m sure you can do it by hand too. This dish seemed pretty weird at first, but it’s refreshing and tasty. Plus it’s super easy and a cool twist on the mozzarella, basil, tomato, and balsamic vinegar with olive oil appetizer.
Below are four recipes I made this summer as part of my self-care journey. I enjoy trying new recipes because it’s such a therapeutic process and the results are delicious!
All of my recipes have turned out well with the exception of the time I tried to cook with cauliflower. I didn’t take a photo of the product; I ended up discarding it altogether. I tried to make mashed cauliflower and the recipe had called for about a cup of chicken broth but instead, I had mistakenly added all of the chicken broth I had heated up. The cauliflower became incredibly salty and super unpleasant to eat. I was frustrated because I spent a long time making it, especially because I had never cooked or chopped cauliflower before. It sucked to have the final product be so disastrous but…what matters is that I tried something new to begin with!
Whenever I think about cauliflower now, I start tasting the salty-nastiness of my failed recipe. I will have to try the recipe again though so I can master it!
Anyway…the recipes below turned out really well. I found them on either the Food Network’s In the Kitchen app, on Delish.com, or in People Magazine.
This is the first self-care post!
If you’ve read any of the three posts I’ve written since I returned from my hiatus, you would understand that I’ve been overwhelmed by heavy emotions and that I’ve been taking measures to improve my mood and well-being. I’m currently on summer break and although I’m working two part-time jobs, they are jobs I can do from home and I have flexible hours so I have been able to ensure that I’m making self-care my priority!
Methods that I’ve taken to improve my well-being include working out, writing, and cooking.
I won’t be delving too much into my workout because I’m still trying to consistently go to the gym. For two weeks I went twice a week and last week I went three times, so now I’m trying to go three times this week too. I go for about 20-30 minutes…I want to eventually increase the sessions. Otherwise, there’s nothing noteworthy about my workout (yet).
I’m not going to explore the writing method because I share all my publishable writing on here; therefore, I will solely be exploring cooking in these posts! If I start getting into another type of self-care habit, I will definitely share it with y’all but in the meantime…I’ll only be talking about food.