Monday, February 27, 2017

On the First Day of Great Lent

Here we are, the first day of Great Lent! No joke, it feels like just yesterday I was baking kulichi and now we are on the path to Pascha once more in what feels like no time at all.

I love Great Lent more and more each year.

This year I decided to meal plan for Great Lent in a new way. I took a calendar for each month of Great Lent, beginning with the end of February and into April, and tried to roughly plan out lunch and dinner for each day. Before you think that this sounds totally crazy, I will explain - I have kept things very simple. I decided to make lunch a soup each day. My husband tends to get very bored eating the same soup too often in a row, so I maxed it out at 3 days in a row for one soup. I am freezing whatever leftovers there are so that we can repeat them a little bit later in Great Lent without having to make a new batch of soup.

This week, my husband is not eating oil products, so that simplified our menu a great deal. I made my grandmother's Normandy Vegetable Soup and am sharing the recipe below. To go along with our soup I made an Artisan loaf of bread this morning which is already half gone. If needed I will make a new loaf tomorrow (I'll probably have to do that).

Later this week, I'll be making an oil-free bean soup which is a first time recipe for me. If it is any good, I'll share it later on. Tomorrow I also plan to make lentil chili, a new-to-me recipe as well. Will share if it is worth it or not.

In the meantime, here is the Normandy Vegetable Soup recipe.

Normandy Vegetable Soup

2 lb. bag of frozen Normandy vegetable blend
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
1 parsnip, peeled and diced

Pour all the vegetables together into a large soup pot. Cover with JUST ENOUGH water to cover. (I almost always pour more water than necessary and end up annoyed with myself later). Boil. Let this boil until all the vegetables are soft. Add in spices as you wish. Usually I add in paprika, garlic powder, and enough salt - can always add more later. Once the vegetables are soft, take a hand/immersion blender and puree the entire soup. It should be pretty thick still. Add in any creamer of your choice - almond, rice, soy milk, or non-dairy coffee creamer. Just enough to make it to the consistency of your desire. Serve with croutons if desired.

Note: You can also use vegetable broth if you'd like for the veggies. I tend to always use water because I make it on the days my husband is not eating oil products. You can make this non-fasting easily as well and use half and half to thicken the soup instead, and use chicken broth of course!

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