February means football. And football means feeding a crowd. This weekend instead of the expected spread of hot wings, nachos, and dip, how about hosting a Soup-er Bowl? Cook up two soups to represent each team and face off. Or have guests bring bisques, chilis, and chowders and put them up for a vote. Either way, add a little creativity for a menu that will leave the buffet empty before the half-time show is over. Here’s a soup to get you started.
Sausage, Lentil & Kale Soup
Adapted from Rachael Ray
Serves 6 to 8
1 tablespoon olive oil
12 ounces lean sausage, such as Jimmy Dean or turkey sausage
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
1 large russet potato, peeled and chopped into small dice
1 jalapeno, finely chopped
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped
3 large cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 box low-sodium chicken stock
1 bundle kale, stemmed and thinly sliced
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 small can tomato paste
1 1/2 cups lentils
2 cups water
Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the sausage and brown. Add the onions, celery, carrots, potato, jalapeno, rosemary, garlic, cumin, chili flakes, salt, and pepper, and cook until softened, about 10 minutes.
Pour in 1/2 cup of chicken stock to deglaze the pan, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any brown bits on the bottom. Add in the kale, and season with nutmeg. Cook until kale is wilted and stir in the tomato paste. Cook about 5 minutes, then stir in the lentils, remaining stock, and water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and simmer the soup until the lentils and vegetables are all tender, about 45 minutes. Serve with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese and warm, crusty bread.
Larissa Arnault is the Marketing Specialist for LifeWay Women. She spends her days writing copy and managing projects for all things related to the LifeWay Women brand. After hours, you can find her trying new recipes in her prized Le Creuset Dutch oven while listening to French music.