Friday, 10 January 2014

Mexican Winter Food

I find that one of the best ways to deal with Christmas being over is to eat spicy food. Bright and spicy Mexican dishes with toppings galore always make me happy on a dreary evening in Janaury.

Today's recipe is one from Chatealine, but I've topped their Mexican Lentil Soup with a delicious medley of treats that I think would make even the darkest night fun. Toppings make this soup interactive and can also make eating the soup into a game of who-can-make-the-best-topped-soup? 

That's not just a game at my house, is it? If that's not the game for you, try your chance at my current giveaway for Team Canada 2014 Olympic Gear

Mexican Lentil Soup - serves 6

1 onion or 2 leeks, finely diced
2 carrots, peeled and finely diced
2 stalks of celery, peeled and finely diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red pepper, finely diced
3 jalapeƱo peppers, finely diced (and seeds removed if you can't take the heat)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups of dried red lentils
6 cups of vegetable broth or water 
1 tablespoon of chili powder
2 teaspoons each of cumin and dried herbs (I used basil)
Salt and pepper, to taste 
Toppings - feta or queso fresco, green onions, avocado, celery leaves, tomatoes, tortilla chips, sour cream, or whatever else your heart desires. 

1. Add onion, carrots, celery, garlic, peppers, and oil to a large soup pot. Cook on medium heat until veggies soften. 

2. Add remaining ingredients, except for salt, pepper, and toppings, and cook until lentils are soft and ready to eat. Add more broth or water if you'd like your soup thinner during the cooking process. 

3. Season to taste, serve, and top with whatever toppings you desire. 

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