If you are subscribed to my Facebook updates, you know that my husband is unemployed again temporarily. We are exclusively living off of our food storage until things change. We’ve tightened down everything we can on the ship and I’m using bone broth more than ever to help stretch the meals.
I have found that a meatless meal must be very substantial and fatty in order to fill everyone up until breakfast the next morning. That’s impossible to achieve by a soup-only meal. When they don’t get enough food in calories and volume at dinner, they tend to get up very early in the morning, very hungry.
So instead we have our meatless meal at lunch, if we don’t have any leftovers to use. For dinner, we have soup as a starter every night, then have a main meal. This keeps the bellies full overnight and still allows me to stretch the meal and keep the budget down. Kids don’t eat as much meat when they’ve already had a cup of soup.
Cheap beans such as lentils are great budget-stretchers, too. I find my kids are very accepting of lentils when they’re mixed into a soup.
I do require that my children finish their soup before they eat the main meal, however I always try to make sure the soups I’m serving are ones they like and enjoy. Putting a small amount of bacon into this soup convinced them to eat it without any reminders from me.
From the Menu Mailer
4-6 cups chicken stock
2 onions, diced
1 lb diced, cooked bacon or 2 cups diced, cooked ham, optional
3 carrots, diced
1 tsp rosemary
1 tsp salt, if not using pork
¾ tsp sage
¼ tsp pepper
1 lb dried lentils
2 cloves garlic, pressed
1 bay leaf
Any other veggies you have on hand, diced
Combine all ingredients in a crock-pot and cook on low 3-4 hours or until lentils are tender. Remove the bay leaf before serving.
Can substitute any cooked meat for the pork or omit it entirely, and substitute thyme or another dried herb or herb combination for the rosemary. Can substitute other stocks for the chicken.
Shared at Sunday Night Soup Night.
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