“Cry no more” lentil & bone broth soup with parsley garlic oil

by ali

lunch

Two weeks ago,  our hearts were broken. Our amazing dog of 14 years, Bacon the incredibly insightful and sensitive pug, was finally released to the next realm. On November 9th of 2001, I adopted Bacon when he was a puppy of 8 weeks old. In truth, Bacon picked me, and I’m so grateful he did. At the breeder, there were 3 little pug puppies ready to be adopted. When we walked in to view them – he ran up to the gate, jumped up and begged to be held. When I put him back down  – he howled until I came back and picked him up again. I was smitten. Our love was true from the start, and that little guy was my main man – we called him “the management” for almost 14 years. Through the end of college, my first job – where I was able to bring him to work with me, through a giant move to San Diego, through a divorce, a new relationship and 3 moves later…he has been my comfort and my soulmate. He brought me light and joy. I even wrote a song about this dog. No joke!  (CLICK HERE TO LISTEN

Sofia bee

Scott and I and Bacon’s little buddy Sofia (our surviving female pug in the bee costume) loved Bacon (the sensibly dressed pug) with all of our hearts and his leaving has left a huge hole in our household and in our daily routines. We would often start the day with the dogs hanging out on the bed and he would bark at us when he was ready for his food – quite demanding but adorable. He always had an irresistible bounce to his bark – his front feet coming off the floor to emphasize the urgency of his requests. I miss him banging on the pantry cabinets to get our attention and give him a treat. I miss his 4pm “restless dog hour” demands where, if I was on the phone, he would grab my pant leg or skirt and pull on it until I stopped and played with him. We will be missing this dog for decades.

But isn’t this a soup recipe?  Yes, yes it is, but the eating of it will be richer when you have the whole context of it’s origins.

Sometimes when your heart gets broken, all you can do is try to nourish it back to health with warmth and kindness. I have often found that soup, broth based soups, are where this process of healing can begin both internally for your soul and internally for your body. When you’re grieving, you have to be kind to yourself, give yourself space, wrap yourself in soft blankets and above all, allow yourself to cry – something both Scott and I have been doing almost daily.  As I sit here, writing this post and eating a bowl of this leftover soup (I added eggs for lunch), there are still tears streaming down my face – and I’m ok with that. For now at least.

So maybe it should be called “Cry as much as you need” soup  instead? Whatever you call it, its bright, creamy, healthy and comforting and it will nourish you through hard days. I have even included a bit of turmeric for it’s anti-inflammatory properties – and it has really helped my ongoing neck and shoulder issues. It’s powerful stuff. The tears may still flow but I’m staying strong, focused and healthy – I know Bacon would approve – even through this loss, I’m learning new lessons from him – how to let go gracefully and look forward with joy and gratitude. I know his sweet little pug soul will always be with me – sitting there on that rug in the kitchen while I’m cooking, barking for a taste of the magical creations he “supervises”.

Lentil & Bone Broth Soup with Parsley Garlic Oil 

1/2 gallon of homemade Beef Bone Broth

1/2 gallon of  homemade Chicken Broth *or water

1 shallot, finely diced

2 cloves garlic finely diced

1/2 tsp Tarragon 1 tsp Turmeric powder

4 Tbsp Coconut Oil

3 Tbsp Butter

1 Tbsp Salt

1 Tbsp Cracked Pepper

2 cups dry Lentils (I used a combo of orange lentils & black for this recipe but any type will do)

Instructions: Add Coconut oil and butter to a heating Le Crueset Pot – heat until melted, then add shallots & garlic – cook over medium heat until soft and translucent – do not brown.

Add Broths & Stir – bring to a simmer

Add Lentils – cook for 30-40 minutes until Lentils are tender and soup is thick.

With an immersion blender (or you can use a blender or food processor carefully in small batches) – blend soup until creamy and thick. Some larger lentil pieces will still be present. Keep on low heat to allow soup to stay warm.

Oil:  Combine & blend in a food processor

3 cloves baked garlic (I baked in olive oil wrapped in foil at 400 for 30 mins)

5 green onions / chives

1 bunch parsley – stems removed

salt, pepper to taste

1/2 cup olive oil

1 squeeze of lemon (1 tsp juice)

Spoon your finished soup into a bowl – drizzle the fragrant green oil on top in  a happy face pattern & eat it with a grateful heart.

A couple of great accompaniments for this soup are: two soft boiled eggs, or a piece of sourdough bread with baked garlic schmeared on it – sprinkled with sea salt.

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