Sopa de Lentajas

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I think I loved Spanish cuisine before I had a Spanish brother-in-law; however, his presence in my life has certainly embellished my Spanish recipe collection. One of my favorite things about this cuisine is their use of pork. It flavors so many of their rich dishes and is definitely a staple in most Spanish households.

The influence of many cultures can be found in Spanish recipes. Take, for instance, sopa de lentajas, a lovely dish of chorizo, potatoes, and lentils. The lentils, likely being an influence from the Middle East/Africa, and the rich pork chorizo, being atruly Spanish ingredient, play well together. This dish is rich, flavorful, and hearty. I’ve enjoyed many variations with this one being my own personal take on it. Traditionally made with chorizo link sausage, lentejas can also be made with bulk sausage, which gives it a thick stew-like texture. One of the most important ingredients in lentejas is Spanish paprika (pimentón)—a smoky spice made from red peppers. It comes in sweet or hot and provides a wonderful flavor profile in any pork dish.


• 2 cups of lentils, rinsed
• 1 lb. Firsthand Foods chorizo
• 4 cloves of garlic, peeled
• 1 medium onion, diced
• 1 large potato, peeled and diced
• 2 carrots, peeled and diced
• 32 oz. vegetable stock
• 2 cups water
• 1 Tbs. Spanish paprika
• Olive oil for sautéing
• Salt to taste


1. Heat 1 Tbs. olive oil in a 5 qt. stockpot. Add chorizo and cook until it is browned. Drain and set aside.
2. Wipe out the inside of the stockpot and add 1 Tbs. olive oil. Heat oil over medium high heat. Add onions and carrots. Add ½ tsp. salt and sauté for 5-7 minutes or until onions begin to caramelize.
3. Add Spanish paprika and stir to coat vegetables. Add the vegetable stock, 2 cups of water, chorizo, lentils, potatoes, and garlic.
4. Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Simmer for 45 minutes. Remove garlic, mash, and add back to the stock stirring to combine. Add salt to taste.