This is one of my favorite go-to meals. It’s easy to prepare, all in one pot, and is very flavorful and satisfying. It can be eaten alone as a stew, over some brown jasmine rice, or ladled into steamed corn tortillas with rice for an even heartier meal.
6 cups water
1 cup French Green lentils (see chart below)
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 small yam or sweet potato, diced (about two cups)
2 cups small cauliflower florets
2 ribs celery, sliced
1 can (14.5-oz.) diced, salt-free tomatoes
2 teaspoons curry powder
2 teaspoons dried green herbs (like a French or Italian blend)
1 teaspoon granulated onion
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
4 cups greens cut into bite-size pieces (like kale, chard, spinach, collards, beet greens)
1. In a soup pot on high, bring the water and lentils to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 20 minutes (a low boil).
2. Add the onion, yam/sweet potato, cauliflower, celery, tomatoes (including juice), and the four herbs and spices. Cook for 10 minutes at the same heat. Add greens, and cook for 5-10 more minutes (spinach, chard and beet greens won’t take as long to cook as kale or collard greens), until potatoes and greens are tender. Serve as is or over cooked brown rice.
Preparation: 25 minutes
Cooking time: 40 minutes
Serves: 4 (makes about 8 cups or 4 bowls)
Soup, stew or filling: As written, this recipe is more of a stew than a soup (especially upon reheating the next day), so I like to serve it over brown or wild rice, or in a corn tortilla with a little avocado on top. But you can easily make it into a soup by adding 1-2 cups of water in step two.
Lentils: A variety of lentils exist (see chart below), and can be used in this recipe by adjusting the cooking time slightly (mainly for red lentils, which take only 25-30 minutes to cook).
Tomatoes: Fresh tomatoes can also be used, especially when they are in season (about 1-1/2 cups diced).
How to cut a cauliflower
(1) Turn the cauliflower upside down. (2) Remove the thick outer leaves (the leaves are also edible, but are most often discarded). (3) Cut down along the thick inner core until all the florets are free. (4) Now you are left with just the core, separated perfectly from the florets, and no waste. Cut florets smaller from here.
What is curry powder?
Curry powder is a mixture of spices that usually includes turmeric (gives the yellow color), coriander, cumin, fenugreek, and red pepper. Depending on the curry powder recipe, additional ingredients may be included, such as ginger, garlic, asafoetida, fennel seed, caraway, cinnamon, clove, mustard seed, cardamom, nutmeg, and black pepper. Some cooks create different curry mixtures for different recipes, with some mild in flavor and others quite hot and spicy; those sold in grocery stores are typically on the milder side. In Eastern Indian cultures, curry recipes are often passed down from generation to generation.
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