Friday, January 18, 2013

The Soup Has Failed Me

Earlier this week, I tried to make split pea soup in the crock pot.

Tried.

I've been trying to use the crock pot more often lately; it's been hard, with my new work schedule, to walk in the door at 5:30 and try to figure out whether I have the ingredients for a particular dish. On the morning of the split pea soup, I tossed the remaining lentils into the Instant Meal God, along with some rice, frozen broccoli, onion, spices, and a spoonful of bacon fat, for flavor. I added a few cups of veggie broth and walked out the door for the day.

I always try to make soups that are more stew-like, because Spousal Unit is fond of saying, "Soup is just wet food." Meaning he doesn't like soup. Unfortunately for him, soup is one of the easiest things in the world to make, and almost the only meal I can make in a crock pot. (So far - I have a few recipes I want to try, though.) This split pea soup was no exception, but I had added a bit more water than usual, due to the rice and lentils needing to soak it up.

Unfortunately, it was only when I got home and lifted the slow cooker lid that I remembered what happens to lentils when you cook them a long time: they break down and turn into dal, an Indian stew that basically looks like a thick lentil mash.

And despite the fact that I used red lentils, this lentil mash was green. The broccoli I'd hurriedly added wasn't full florets, like I'd hoped - it was shredded. So now I had a really sickly green accidental dal for dinner.

"Um, Spousal Unit," I said as I stirred, "Turns out dinner is less like a stew and more like a... glop."

"Awesome," he said. And he totally meant it.

Ten minutes and one package of baked refrigerator biscuits later, we discovered it actually tasted good, with a little garam masala sprinkled on it. So even though I completely failed at what I wanted to make, it still turned out delicious.

Win.

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