This week our Highchair Travelers visit sunny Spain for some Lentejas, a traditional Spanish lentil soup. Perfect for the cold weather and a delicious example of international “comfort food,” lentejas is also simple to make and kid-friendly.
Lentejas can be made with brown or green lentils. The lentils need to be soaked in cold water for at least one hour before cooking, and can be left soaking overnight to shorten cooking time considerably.
The recipe calls for Spanish chorizo, which is totally different from the more common Mexican chorizo. Spanish chorizo is a cured, dry sausage similar to salami. If you can’t find the real thing, you can use kielbasa, summer sausage or even just cured ham instead.
Lentejas con Chorizo
1 lb dry brown or green lentils
4 medium potatoes
2 stalks celery
1 large onion
1 green pepper
4 roma tomatoes, chopped, or one can diced tomatoes
3 cloves garlic
2 links Spanish chorizo
Vegetable broth or water (3-4 cups)
1 bay leaf
2 t cumin
2 t salt
1 t black pepper
Drain lentils from water and set aside. Peel and dice potatoes and carrots in bite sized chunks. Dice onion, celery and green pepper.
In a large saucepan over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons olive oil and saute all vegetables and garlic (minus tomatoes) for 3-4 minutes.
Add lentils, sliced chorizo and tomatoes to pot and add vegetable broth or water to cover. Stir in salt and bay leaf and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to simmer and cook uncovered until lentils are tender, 20-45 minutes (depending on soak time.) Keep stirring occasionally and check water levels, adding more water as needed. 5 minutes before complete, add cumin, pepper and adjust other seasonings to taste.
Looking for more Spanish fun? Check out the Highchair Travelers Pinterest page.