Well, tonight was dance night, so that meant something quick and easy needed to be prepared for dinner. I have been staying away from the crock pot, as I have discovered I just am not liking what comes out of it. However, it has found fantastic use as a re-heater. I don't care to actually cook in it, but to cook on the stove and then put it in the crock pot to re-heat or keep warm works perfectly. And so it was that today was a soup day.
Last week, while at the butcher with my Mom, she ordered some Polish sausage and told me she wanted to use it to make a lentil soup. Oh! Good idea! They make fantastic Polish sausage. So I picked some up as well, and they've been sitting in the freezer patiently waiting. Since I spent yesterday and this morning making a pot of chicken stock, I had plenty of that for a base and created a lentil and sausage soup. I checked around for several recipes, but I didn't have a lot of the ingredients for some. The recipe I most closely stuck with was from good ole' reliable, Joy Of Cooking.
As I was cubing up the sausage for the soup, I recalled a recent experience with a sausage soup where the soup leached all the flavor out of the sausage. Made for great soup, but rather sad bites of sausage. I decided to only cube up half of the sausage for the actual soup making process. I saved the other half to be sliced and added in at the end. Worked perfectly! At the last minute, I also decided to toss in a diced sweet potato- mostly for color, but I think it also added a lot to the end flavor. The only problem I had with this soup was that I was out of thyme. I ended up using basil, and I really think that the thyme would have made this soup sparkle. I have now added a Penzey's run to the list of priorities, and Lentil and Sausage Soup will be repeated quite a few times in the near future.