With the official start of winter and its accompanying chills only about a week away, it's time to ready our defenses in the kitchen. One of our staples for the season is lentil soup, and this year our plan is to make James Beard's "rather different" version, which was inspired by the vibrant flavors of Syria. He added three quarters of a cup of lemon juice just a few minutes before the soup was finished, giving it a welcome undercurrent of acid. For extra flavor and heft, we like to throw in some diced bacon when we start cooking the lentils. James Beard favored cotechino, an Italian pork sausage that's a classic pairing for these legumes.
Your can also find this recipe and more of James Beard's classic dishes in The Essential James Beard Cookbook, a collection of dishes culled from twelve of his iconic books, including Hors d'Oeuvre and Canapés, Menus for Entertaining, Beard on Pasta, and The Armchair James Beard. Get your copy of this new St. Martin's Press release at our Amazon store.