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Sun Harvest Lentil Soup


No recipe.  This is a self created dish based upon memory of a bulk soup purchased from a local health food store over 30 years ago.  Sun Harvest was the health food store where we grew up before there was Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Sprouts, etc...  Back in the day when the only customers who supported health food store were labeled as nutters by their friends and family alike, Sun Harvest was the best.  They had bulk dry goods like beans, rice, flour, sugar, soups, and.  And no, you could not buy white flour in bulk unless you were buying organic.  They had dried fruits, veggies, and meats along with tofu, bean sprouts, jicama, and aloe vera juice by the gallons.  They had organic fresh fruit and vegetables, farm raised meats and eggs, aroma therapy, vitamins and minerals, and even a few pre-boxed meals like mac and cheese before there was Annie's Mac and Cheese.

Both the table counterpart and I grew up eating from their wide variety of soups.  Sadly, the store closed and all that is left is a memory of what this hearty soup used to taste like.  After a few iterations, Sun Harvest Lentil Soup was formed.

Ingredients:
Smoked Pork Ham Hock, diced
Onions, diced
Split Peas
Lentils
Barley
Bay Leaf
Salt & Pepper
Chicken Broth
Carrots, diced
Celery, diced

Instructions:
We have found over time, one-third cup per person works best to allow for ample dinner bowls and some leftovers.  Use equal parts for all ingredients except bay leaf and chicken broth.  To a large dutch oven, saute onions with diced ham hocks.  Add split peas, lentils, barley, bay leaf, salt and pepper, and chicken broth to cover with one inch of space above ingredients.  Cook for 15 minutes, add carrots and celery and cook until barley is tender.  Stir occasionally to keep from sticking on bottom adding water or chicken stock as needed.

Scaled for Likability: Great
Soul warming, heart filling.  Ok, well stomach filling.  It is the perfect soup for cold winter days with some extra butter crunchy bread slices.  It is the perfect soup any time but it is just too hot to eat it without AC kitchens.  

Great today, better tomorrow, best two days from now if it could just last that long in the fridge.  Can be made without meat and is equally as good, too.

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