Longer Reads

Seasonal Recipe: Curried Red Lentil Soup with Swiss Chard and Chick Peas

I originally got this recipe off of epicuious.com, but I’ve adapted it and changed it so many times that this has really become my very own, unique version. This soup is hearty, spicy, flavorful, and filled with veggie goodness. Enjoy it along with my “All Too Easy Garlicky Toasts” (that recipe follows this one).

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, cut in quarters and thinly sliced
5 teaspoons curry powder
1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, depending on how spicy you like it
8 cups of water
1 carrot, cut in half lengthwise, then sliced
1 pound red lentils (about 2 1/4 cups), rinsed
1 1-inch piece of kombu*, optional
2 large bunches of Swiss chard**, tough stalks removed, coarsely chopped
1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained
Juice of 1 lemon
Sour cream or greek-style yogurt

Heat oil in heavy, large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté until golden, about 10 minutes. Mix in curry and cayenne. Add water. Increase heat; bring to boil. Add carrot, lentils, and kombu (if using); reduce heat to medium. Cover; simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add Swiss chard and garbanzos; cook for another 10 minutes and stir occasionally. Lentils should be soft and creamy.  If not, cook for a couple of minutes more.  This soup tends to be quite thick, so add more water if you prefer a thinner consistency. Remove kombu and either discard or eat it if you want to. I usually eat it. Stir in juice of one lemon. Season with sea salt and pepper (this soup usually needs a fair amount of salt since it isn’t broth-based). Serve in bowls topped with a dollop of sour cream or yogurt and a slice of my “All Too Easy Garlicky Toast.”

*Kombu is a sea vegetable that aids in the digestion of beans and legumes.

**You can easily swap spinach for Swiss Chard in this recipe

Andy’s” All Too Easy Garlicky Toasts”

This is my favorite accompaniment to any soup. We don’t own a toaster so I stick my bread in the oven to heat it. Here are my directions for oven-toasted bread, but feel free to skip some steps if using a toaster.

1)  Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
2)  Place a thick slice of whole grain bread in the oven.
3)  While bread toasts, peel a garlic clove and slice it in half.
4)  When bread reaches desired toastiness, remove from oven and rub the cut-side of the clove over the surface of the toast until you reach desired garlickyness.
5)  Spread organic butter on top of toast. Sprinkle with fresh ground sea salt if desired.
6)  Eat toast & enjoy.
7)  Don’t kiss anyone for about an hour.