Mushroom-Lentil Noodle Soup

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Noodle soups are the best because they’re everything you love about an entree without any of the fuss. You’ve got your carbs, protein, and veggies all in one place! In this recipe, creminis and brown lentils team up to create a beefy soup that hits all the noodly notes. I love cavatappi because it holds its own with all of the hearty ingredients and won’t fall apart if you have leftovers. If you can’t find it, fusilli would be nice, too. Using dried lentils is crucial here to create a rich, complex broth, so don’t sub cooked lentils, lazypants. There’s a lot of finger-wagging on the best way to clean mushrooms. If you’re on a televised cooking competition, sure go ahead and wipe each precious one with a damp kitchen towel that has no cat hair on it. But if you’re in the privacy of your own kitchen, go ahead and wash them in a bowl with cold water, swishing them around a bit to get the dirt off, then drain, trim, and slice. It’s okay if they get waterlogged because, guess what, they’re going in soup anyway.

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Ingredients

  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 ribs celery, sliced ¼ inch (6 mm) thick
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 10 ounces (280 g) cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced (3 cups/185 g)
  • ½ teaspoon salt Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme, plus extra for garnish
  • cups (165 g) peeled carrots, sliced on a bias ¼ inch (6 mm) thick
  • 8 cups (2 L) vegetable broth
  • ½ cup (95 g) brown or green lentils
  • 8 ounces (225 g) cavatappi or fusilli

Method

  1. Preheat a 4-quart (3.8 L) soup pot over medium heat. Sauté the onion and celery in the oil with a pinch of salt until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds or so.
  2. Add the mushrooms, salt, pepper to taste, and the thyme and sauté until the mushrooms are soft and golden, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the carrots, vegetable broth, and lentils. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, lower the heat to a simmer and cook until the lentils are tender, about 20 minutes, depending on your lentils.
  4. Turn the heat up to a low boil, add the pasta, and cook for about 10 minutes, or until the pasta is done. Turn off the heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper and serve.