You can prepare this soup as the main course in a hearty lunch or dinner. But—on cold winter evenings here in New England—I've often poured a steaming mugful and enjoyed sipping it in front of our fireplace as well. —Mrs. Guy Turnbull, Arlington, Massachusetts
- 1 pound ground beef (90% lean)
- 1 can (46 ounces) tomato or V8 juice
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup dried lentils, rinsed
- 2 cups chopped cabbage
- 1 cup sliced carrots
- 1 cup sliced celery
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 1/2 cup diced green pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon salt, optional
- 2 beef bouillon cubes, optional
- 1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed
- In a large stockpot, cook beef over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. Add the tomato juice, water, lentils, cabbage, carrots, celery, onion, green pepper, pepper, thyme, bay leaf, salt and bouillon if desired.
- Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 1 to 1-1/2 hours or until the lentils and vegetables are tender. Add spinach and heat through. Remove bay leaf. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Beef Lentil Soup in Country Woman January/February 1993, p31
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