So...a few disclaimers before I begin:
1. I realize that I am posting this after 7 on a Tuesday so it will most-assuredly be of no use to you whatever in getting dinner on the table this evening. But...it MAY help you in the future (like tomorrow...)
2. Please do not let the uninspired name of this dish deter you...because this soup is awesome. Awesome, I tell you.
3. Just because my toddler gobbles this up (kale included), don't assume that yours will, especially if he or she is a picky eater. Mine is not gifted in any way, but he eats a variety of flavors and textures which I can only presume is because of his fairly-intense OT when he was learning how to suppress his gag-reflex and get off the gtube.
4. Pay no attention to the list of ingredients and how you assume they may blend together...because I personally think it sounds a little disgusting.
So why would I ever make it? Bc my sweet friend MR made it for me and I loved it...and then I saw what was in it, and knew that if I saw the recipe first, I wouldn't ever make it.
Or eat it. (Sorry, MR...)
But it is truly delicious. And the recipe makes a crap-ton (official amount) of soup, so our family of 5 eats it for 3 nights (not in a row...I'm not a monster!) and then someone (usually me!) gets a tiny bit for lunch one day.
I could go on and on about how much I love this soup, but because my time is short and I really feel as though I must get this recipe shared with you, here is my version, slightly-altered from the one MR gave me...and some additional notes thrown in for fun.
Spiced Lentil Soup
Feeds: One Legion
1 pound ground sausage, crumbled
1/2 cup onions (or more...we like onions)
1/2 cup barley
3 cloves of garlic (I never remember to buy garlic so it's garlic powder for us!)
3 quarts chicken stock (I make a whole chicken in the crockpot and then make the stock from the bones; in case you've never made stock, here's the easy-breezy way to make it: put all the bones back in the crockpot, fill to the top with water and simmer for 10-12 hours on low. Ta-dah! Also works with the bones of a pre-baked rotisserie chicken you might buy at the grocery.)
1 cup lentils
1 baked, deboned & shredded chicken breast (or use about 1/3 of 5 lb chicken...I use part of the chicken I cooked for stock)
1 can garbanzo beans, drained
1 pound of spinach or kale (in my experience, kale holds up a little better, especially if you have leftovers for a couple nights...and FYI Aldi has big bags of washed and cut kale for $2.49...well worth the time saved in washing and cutting, I think)
12 oz salsa
Brown sausage with onion and garlic (Sometimes I'll make mine the night before so I just start in the morning by putting it straight in the crockpot from the fridge). Remove and place in bottom of crockpot. Add all remaining ingredients. (I think it's easiest to put the stock in last so it minimizes splashing all over the counter...don't ask me how I know that.)
Cook on low for 8-10 hours or on high for 5-6. If you're looking for suggestions, it's lovely served with cornbread on the side. Enjoy (for several days...)