In February, food prices rose more than they have in any month since 2011, and forecasters expect the trend to continue. Factors ranging from drought to rising demand are driving the increase, which is hitting staples including meat, vegetables and coffee. We consider the variety of local and global factors behind the numbers and learn how to stretch food budget dollars while maintaining a healthy diet.
Recipe: Swiss Chard And Lentil Soup
Photo By Molly M. Peterson
From "The Arcadia Mobile Market Seasonal Cookbook" by JuJu Harris
1 cup lentils, rinsed
6 cups water
1 bay leaf
Several sprigs of fresh thyme
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 pound Swiss chard, washed and sliced thinly
1 lemon, wedged
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large soup pot add the lentils, 6 cups of water, bay leaf and thyme. Over medium-high heat, bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, until lentils are tender.
In a skillet over medium-low, heat the olive oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until it softens. Then add the garlic, coriander, cayenne and Swiss chard. Cook for 5 minutes, until the Swiss chard wilts.
Add the Swiss chard mixture to the lentils and stir to incorporate. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice in each bowl.