Wednesday, January 13, 2016

turning leftovers into soup // red lentil, rice + sweet potato soup

red lentil, rice + sweet potato soup
Most of us at one time or another have run into the dreaded leftovers that don't quite constitute as a full fledged "meal". Am I right?

Often times when making curry or a stir fry I always have a cup or so of rice leftover with no actual curry or stir fry to speak of. Or I will randomly have a cup of mashed squash or sweet potato sitting in in the fridge. 

I really make an effort not to waste food, when I have little odds and ends leftover from a meal I pop them in a container and store them in the fridge. During the winter month's these leftovers are most often used as  base for a weekend soup.


red lentil, rice + sweet potato soup
Leftover mashed potatoes or squash make an amazing thickener for a soup. All you need to do is add a few pantry staples to create another amazing meal out of leftover's that otherwise may or may not have just been thrown out.

A few weeks ago I tossed together a "Chicken" and Rice Soup with leftover white rice, the week before that I made a butternut squash and orzo vegetable soup and this week I threw together a red lentil, rice and sweet potato soup. 

To create the base of my soup I always use nutritional yeast, tomato paste, and all purpose seasoning and if I have leftover vegetable stock I toss that in. Frozen veggies are all awesome to toss in along with a carrot and some type of onion be it white, red or a shallot.

Quick, easy and delicious and  will cost you maybe a few dollars if that for 4 servings.

red lentil, rice + sweet potato soup
Since the soup is so easy to make with little or no prep work I like to make a loaf of bread while the soup is simmering. The bread changes weekly based on my mood, this past weekend I received my all time favorite seed mix // triple omega seed mix .  The recipe is loosely based on my Multi Seeded Baguette recipe. I used bread flour and organic cane sugar as the primary sweetener.

red lentil, rice + sweet potato soup
Red lentils are great for quick cooking soups, they cook up fast and if cooked long enough breakdown making a nice thick and creamy soup.

Leftovers never have to be boring again.

red lentil, rice + sweet potato soup

Red Lentil, Rice + Sweet Potato Soup
serves 4

you will need:
1 medium carrot // cut in half lengthwise and sliced into half moons
1/4 cup red onion // chopped
olive oil
salt to taste
1 cup mashed sweet potatoes
1/2 cup cooked rice
1 cup dried red lentils
1 tsp all purpose seasoning // I used a Mediterranean style seasoning
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp tomato paste
6 - 8 cups water or stock // a combination of both works too

assembly:

In a medium soup pot drizzle with olive oil and heat to a medium heat. Add red onion and carrots, season with salt and saute until onion begins to turn translucent.

Add mashed sweet potatoes, cooked rice and dried red lentils. Season with all purpose seasoning, nutritional yeast + tomato paste. Add water/stock and bring to a boil.

Cover and reduce heat to a simmer; simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour. Turn off the heat and allow to sit for about 10 minutes prior to serving.

If you'd  like, while the soup is cooking make bread.

Enjoy!

Yum

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