Meatless Monday with Vegan French Onion, Fennel, and Green Lentil Soup | Miratel Solutions

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Meatless Monday with Vegan French Onion, Fennel, and Green Lentil Soup

Welcome (back) to the Miratel blog and to our first Meatless Monday recipe share of 2016. We took the Meatless Monday pledge to support reducing meat consumption 15% by eliminating it one day per week to preserve the health of our planet. We consider our support of this great movement part of our CSR business strategies as it spreads awareness of the impact of our food choices on our environment. Each week we share a new vegan recipe to help make going meat-free easier.

Soups are a classic comfort food during the colder months. Today we’re bringing you a vegan and gluten free version of the classic French Onion soup with a twist; French onion, fennel, and green lentil soup. This great recipe (and idea) comes from One Green Planet, an amazing resource for all things good for the planet like being vegan

INGREDIENTS

Caramelized Onions:

  • 4 yellow or white onionsvegan french onion fennel lentil soup
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine (I used sauvignon blanc)
  • Sea salt to taste

Soup:

  • 4 yellow or white onions
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (for fennel stalks) plus 1/4 cup (for the caramelized onions)
  • 1 1/2 cup French green lentils
  • 8 cups filtered water
  • 2 sprigs plus 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup fennel stalks
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 vegetable bouillon cube (salt-free)
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine (I used Albarino)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh tarragon leaves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Sherry vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Optional:

  • Toasted French bread
  • Meltable vegan cheese

PREPARATION

To Make the Caramelized Onions:

  1. Start by caramelizing the onions. Cut the ends off the onions then cut in half, remove the skin and slice thin slices into half circles, add to a large straight side pan. Sweat the onions on med heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. This will remove the water and form a golden crust on the pan called “fond.” You will want to use a wooden spoon to scrape the pan with.
  2. Add 1/4 cup of olive oil, deglaze by scraping the pan and stir to combine the golden fond. Turn heat to med-low for 20 more minutes stir a couple of times but not too much, you want the fond to occur, this gives it its golden color and flavor.

To Make the Soup:

  1. Add 1 tablespoon of wine and deglaze then let sit for 10 minutes
  2. Add 2 more tablespoons of wine, deglaze and let cook for 10 more minutes, then add 1 more tablespoon of wine, deglaze and turn off the heat. They should be dark golden in color. If they aren’t, cook a bit longer and deglaze again with a tablespoon of water. Sprinkle with salt.
  3. In a large soup pot combine the lentils, water, two sprigs of thyme and the bay leaf. Bring to a boil then turn to medium-low for 15-20 minutes (use a timer) until lentils are soft but slightly firm then remove the thyme sprigs and bay leaf.
  4. While the lentils are cooking, cut the stalks off the fennel bulb and cut into thin slices starting where the frond are attached to the bulb and measure out a cup.
  5. In a saute pan add 2 tablespoons of olive oil on medium-low heat add the fennel stalks and garlic then saute until the garlic starts to turn golden.
  6. Add the tarragon, 2 tablespoons of thyme and bullion cubes to the fennel stalks, mash the bouillon, and stir everything together then add 1 tablespoon of wine to deglaze the pan.
  7. Stir the stalks until they start to get sticky and turn golden then add the remaining tablespoon of wine, deglaze and cook for a couple of minutes. Add to lentils and add a tablespoon of water to the pan and scrap all the flavors out and add to the lentils.
  8. Add the onions to the lentils and do the same as above with 1 tablespoon of water scraping all the flavors out of the pan.
  9. Lastly, add the lemon juice, sherry vinegar, salt and pepper and cook until it is hot and all the flavors combine.
  10. Serve as is, or ladle some soup into an oven safe bowl and top with toasted French bread and grated vegan cheese. Put it under the broiler until it turns golden and bubbly on top.

This soup makes a wonderful main course on a cold winter night, or use a smaller portion as a starter for a dinner party. If serving as a main course you’ll want to make use of the optional addition of French bread and serve along side a salad.

If you haven’t already, we encourage you to visit the Meatless Monday website and join us in taking the pledge today. Spread the word at home and at work and promote CSR business initiatives to make your green call centre, office, factory, shop, restaurant or salon even greener.

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Miratel Solutions is a Toronto call centreeBusiness, and letter shop mail house specializing in professional fundraising services including PCI compliant inbound telephone fundraisingoutbound telephone fundraisingonline fundraisinglottery fundraising servicesdonation processing and receipting and direct mail fundraising services. We are committed to our CSR business values in all our business decisions  and advancing the missions of the nonprofits we proudly serve.

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