One pot often translates to soup, soup, soup. So of course, with my don’t-have-a-kitchen-yet dilemna, I turn to soup as a Sunday afternoon solution. A warming and nutrient-rich turmeric ginger lentil soup. It’s a simple soup with a solid base: onions, carrots, garlic, lentils, tomatoes, spices, and broth — oh yeah lets not forget about those awesome winter greens. Kale. You could of course, pep things up even more by adding diced sweet potato to the mix. Mmmm a creamy textured marvel. Next time.
Turmeric ginger lentil soup is a health remedy in a bowl.
Packed with vitamin A, C and K, this lentil soup is a fantastic cure-all with all its immune-boosting ingredients. It also doubles up as a great anti-inflammatory meal, thanks to the magic of turmeric. If you want to experience even more magic, then try a ginger turmeric tea. Just peel and grate some fresh turmeric (I use 1 teaspoon, the flavor is fairly intense, so start with half a teaspoon and go up from there) and fresh ginger (as much as you like — I like lots), combine with some hot water in your favorite mug and enjoy.
Winter greens are a great addition to soups.
Eating more greens doesn’t have to mean more salad. Even in the midst of winter, it is easy to incorporate healthy greens into your meals. And this doesn’t mean you need to drink a green smoothie every day. Soups are perfect with hearty greens. Any lentil or bean soup can only get better with the addition of kale, collard greens or spinach. All you have to do is chop up some kale and stir it into the soup once it’s all done. Let it simmer for a few minutes to wilt the kale and you’re good to go. My favorite is a mix of “wild kale” sold at my local farmer’s market — Tuscan kale, red Russian kale and curly kale (as shown above).
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 small yellow onions, finely chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely grated
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh turmeric, finely grated (or 1 teaspoon turmeric powder)
leaves from 4 sprigs of fresh thyme (or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme)
2 x 400 g can of organic diced tomatoes
1 cup brown lentils (Bernstein- or Tellerlinsen) (200 g)
3 cups vegetable broth (750 ml)
2 cups water (500 ml)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 bunch fresh kale, tough ribs removed (about 4 handfuls)
juice of 1/2 a lemon, or to taste
NOTE: I used a mixture of kale types; curly kale, red Russian kale and dinosaur kale (which is also known as Tuscan kale, lacinato kale or black kale). This can be substituted with spinach, collard greens, roughly chopped.
1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion and carrot and cook, stirring often, until the onion softens and start to become translucent, about 5 minutes.
2. Add the garlic, cayenne pepper, cumin, ginger, turmeric and thyme. Cook stirring constantly, for about 30 seconds. Add the diced tomatoes and cook for a 2-3 more minutes, stirring often.
3. Add the lentils, broth and water, plus 1/2 teaspoon salt. Season generously with freshly ground black pepper. Increase the heat and bring the mixture to a boil, then partially cover the pot and reduce the heat. Simmer for 25-30 minutes, or until the lentils are tender but still hold their shape (al dente).
4. Add the chopped kale and cook for 5 more minutes (less time if you choose to use spinach).
5. Remove the pot from heat and stir in the freshly squeezed lemon juice. Taste and season with more salt, pepper and/or lemon juice, as desired. Serve this turmeric ginger lentil soup with some crusty bread and enjoy! PS) Leftovers keep well in the refrigerator for a few days.