:: Maple syrup time! We visited Dianna’s amazing homegrown operation today.
You can read more about how she does it in this From Scratch Club post ::
It’s school vacation week here, and for homeschoolers it means we have the chance to visit with our young friends who would ordinarily be in school and our grown up friends who are teachers. From my pre-mothering years I have held onto the idea that “vacation” means “a time to rest and relax” but I am slowly learning that “vacation when you have school-age children” means “a time to play, visit and recharge, but definitely not rest”. Today we started our vacation week by welcoming friends who arrived with arms full of beautiful flowers that look beautiful in our new home; then met other friends for some fun including a trip to join a mutual friend who was cooking down 90 gallons of maple sap in her driveway with the expectation that she will make 2 gallons of delicious syrup. To wrap up the day I made soup for dinner, combining two recipes from trusted chefs/authors and just as I suspected, it was delicious. Not only did Jeff and I love it, the girls loved it too. They devoured it, asking for more and more bowls full. Considering that my children are the “I don’t like what you cooked for dinner” twins and if by chance one of them likes what I cooked, the other usually will not, I would say that the dinner I made tonight was an enormous success. One I will make again and again. And just so we can all find this recipe quickly and easily when we need it, I’ll share it here with you. No photos, unfortunately: all of the aforementioned activities made for a last-minute dinner.
Red Lentil & Coconut Milk Soup
Inspired by recipes by Deborah Madison and Isa Chandra Moskowitz
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
6 cups vegetable broth
1 cup dried red lentils
1 small rutabaga, peeled and diced (about 1 cup)
4-6 ounces canned coconut milk
Juice of 1/2 lime
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Optional: cooked grains, such as quinoa or rice
In a large pot over medium heat, heat the olive oil. Saute the onion for 10 minutes or until soft and translucent. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the cardamom, cinnamon and salt. Add the broth, lentils and rutabaga. Cover, turn the heat to medium-high, and bring to a boil. When the mixture boils, reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the lentils and rutabaga are soft. Remove from the heat. Stir in the coconut milk, lime juice and cilantro. Season with salt and pepper if necessary. Serve as is or over a spoonful of quinoa or rice.