Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Lentil and Rice Cabbage Roll Soup

One of my more popular posts is my recipe for Lentil and Rice Cabbage Rolls. The filling is hearty and tasty, wrapped in tender cabbage leaves topped with one of my favorite foods in the world: Z.'s red sauce.

I wondered if I could take this labor-intensive recipe and turn it into a meal that still had all the same flavors of the original but was much simpler. For me, of course that meant a soup. I must say, while the original recipe was delicious, I think this soup is even better.

A soup version of lentil and rice cabbage rolls has several advantages:
  • The sauce/broth simmers for about 20 minutes creating a rich base for the rest of the ingredients. 
  • This soup is a good use of leftovers, especially if you prefer to cook your lentils and rice separately.
  • Meat-eaters and vegetarians alike will be happy. My recipe is vegetarian but meat can easily be added. For my last leftover meal, I browned up about 1/4 pound of hamburger and included that in my soup. 

Lentil and Rice Cabbage Roll Soup

by Ace Nation
Keywords: soup/stew beans/lentils cabbage rice tomatoes
  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 red chile pepper, such as Fresno, seeds removed and minced
  • 1-2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 head cabbage, chopped
  • 1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 1 12 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 6 cups stock, chicken or vegetable
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1-2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 1/2 cups lentils, cooked
  • 1 cup cooked rice
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste
In a large soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, just beginning to brown, about 10-12 minutes.
Add garlic, chile pepper, and carrots. Cook, stirring occasionally, until carrots and garlic are tender, about 5 minutes.
Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, stock, smoked paprika, and Italian seasoning, stir until combined. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer 15-20 minutes.
Add lentils and cabbage. Simmer until lentils are heated through and cabbage is tender, about 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
To serve, place about 1/4 warm rice in bowl, top with desired about of soup.
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