A few nights ago when I was in the throes of my daily blogging adventure, I asked Matt, "What should I write about?" I asked for his input in spite of the fact that a few days earlier, he admitted that he had only skimmed some of my April posts. Skimmed! He goes, "I kind of read for the main idea; there's been a lot of tennis."
So then I got onto him about never having commented on my blog, never in FOUR YEARS, a period in which my father, my brother, all of my male friends, my brothers-in-law (ALL OF THEM), and my MALE COUSINS (3!) have dropped by my comment section. This conversation was on my blog anniversary, and I said to him, "So this is four years of your unbroken record of silence. Congratulations!" And he was all, "Well at this point it's kind of part of the schtick, right?"
The schtick!?! I mean, honestly! I can't even.
Okay. But obviously we are still in love and we can work through this.
So I asked him what I should blog about, and he goes, "I like it when you post useful information." He cited my broccoli-cauliflower post, my health insurance post, and my toilet-cleaning post of yore. I said, "Okay, what else would be useful information, do you have any?"
He offered, "Well, when you're playing basketball and you're really big but you're not that great at basketball, but you still want to make a contribution, remember that when you're guarding someone, nobody likes contact. So get in under the basket and box out. Fight for your spot." He went on, but that was the gist. Hmm, I thought about that. Nobody likes contact. A useful sports insight but I don't know if it's that tailored to my audience.
So here is my recipe for lentil soup instead.
bag of dry lentils, rinsed (lentils don't need soaking)
four slices of bacon
an onion, chopped
celery stalk, chopped
couple carrots, chopped
clove of garlic
32 oz. box of broth
2 cups water
salt n peppa
bay leaves if you wanna get fussy
an immersion blender or even a potato masher
In your heavy bottomed pot (I use a cast-iron dutch oven) cook the four slices of bacon. Now, I have made this soup with sausage and also with no meat at all. So you don't have to use the bacon. But...why wouldn't you? So cook the bacon and then use a fork to pick the pieces out and put them aside on a plate. Leave the bacon fat in the pot. Cook the onion, garlic, carrots, and celery in the bacon fat. Your kitchen will smell like heaven at this point. One of the guys who works in your basement (you have those, right?) might wander in like a child and just stand there, sniffing the air.
When the onions are looking cooked, pour in the broth and dump in the lentils. Add two cups of water. Add whatever seasonings you feel up to and stir the whole thing together. Bring to a good boil, then turn down the heat, put the lid on the pot, and simmer for maybe 25 minutes. The lentils will start to come apart a little bit and then they're done. Tear up the bacon you cooked into tiny pieces and put them back into the soup.
At this point you need to decide what consistency you want the soup to be. Before I had a handheld blender, I would give the pot a good going over with a potato masher, just to break up some of the lentils and leave others intact. Now I give a few pulses with the immersion blender, but the basic integrity of the lentils remains.
Serve with a dollop of sour cream. Vital.
Even Hank eats this, and there is no greater endorsement that I can give for its kid-friendliness.
Hopefully you will find this to be Useful Information. Enjoy in health, and also remember that when you're playing basketball, get in there and work that caboose.