Checkout with Food Editor Laurin Stamm|Ever try lentils? Try this recipe for Lentil Soup

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 4, 2009

In early December of 1977, food editor Laurin Stamm began a weekly recipe column titled “From the Kitchen of The Cypress House.” The column ran continuously through November of 2000, featuring one or two recipes each week, and totaling more than 1,150 recipes over the 23 years.

Checkout, a current weekly column that features various food stories, events and recipes, looks back at some of the most popular recipes from The Kitchen of the Cypress House, and perhaps a newly discovered one every now and then.

From The Kitchen of The Cypress House,    April 4, 1979 :

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Last week’s warming trend made me think I was too late to give you my newest soup recipe, but when the rains cooled things off again, I changed my mind. And I hope it will stay cool long enough for you to try this lentil soup.

A longtime lover of the Lebanese lentil dish imjadara. I could hardly wait to try this recipe out when I found it in an old 1974 issue of Bon Appetit. It was a big hit with young and old alike. I know now why Esau sold his birthright for “bread and pottage of lentils.”

Lentils are so economical, and their nutritional value can compare with sirloin steak—but more protein and less fat. If you’ve never tried lentils before, now’s the time.

Lentil Soup

1/4 cup olive oil

1 meaty ham hock or several cups diced cooked ham

1/2 pound Polish sausage, cut in 1/2-inch slices

2 large onions

1 clove garlic, chopped

2 cups chopped celery with leaves

1 pound lentils, washed

1/2 teaspoon Tabasco

1 1/2 teaspoons salt or more

Black pepper to taste

1 package frozen leaf spinach thawed, cut

In a large pot, heat the oil. Sauté the onions until golden brown. Add the ham, sausage and garlic; cook 5 minutes.

Add the celery, lentils, Tabasco, salt and pepper, and water to cover (about two quarts.)

Cover and cook the lentils over low heat for 2 hours. Then add the spinach and cook an additional 10 minutes. Serve with hot bread.

 P.S. Mrs. Hess tried the canned ham recipe, but she doesn’t throw away the can. She recommends using it to bake an Easter egg cake. Neat idea.

Thanks, Mrs. Hess.