Snuggle up with this Cozy Lentil Soup
The weather this winter has been so volatile going from -25F degrees with the wind chill to 65F degrees just 3 days later. Then belted with inches of rain with a forecast to plummet below freezing. That’s where we are right now and my guess is we will be left with thin sheets of ice on the roads.
I suppose these are the effects of global warming and climate change. In fact at the end of January the World Economic Forum took place in Davos, Switzerland where they had a panel to discuss this topic among others. You can listen to this panel of speakers including Al Gore discuss the effects of climate change here. It’s eye-opening!
When the weather gets like this all I find I want is hot tea, hot soup, and to snuggle up under a blanket or layer myself in sweat clothes.
With cold and flu season here it’s especially important to nourish our bodies with plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables, vitamins, minerals, and healthy herbs and spices.
This Cozy Lentil Soup recipe I discovered in The Healthy Mind Cookbook by Rebecca Katz. In this book her latest research on the brain is to identify the foods that can improve the brain’s ability to control cognition, emotion, and physical function – all of which dictate memory and mood. Katz then translates the very best of brain science into the kitchen, using delicious nutrient-dense foods as a tool for promoting a healthy mind from childhood through the golden years.
When I saw this recipe I loved every ingredient listed. I assumed it would be flavorful not just healthy, and I was right!
These warming and healthy spices have a plethora of health benefits:
- Turmeric: Boosts cognitive function, anti-inflammatory, supports cardiovascular function, supports joint and muscle health, optimizes function of the liver, natural mood enhancer, promotes youthful radiant skin, and supports natural weight loss
- Curry: fights colon cancer, boosts immune system, relieves arthritis pain, good for the heart, eases digestion, helps to lower cholesterol, and boost your metabolism
- Coriander: wonderful source of dietary fiber, manganese, iron and magnesium, rich in vitamins C, K and protein, lowers bad cholesterol (LDL) increases levels of good cholesterol (HDL), good for digestive system, promotes liver function and healthy bowel movements, good for diabetes patients – can stimulate insulin secretion and lower blood sugar levels, anti-inflammatory.
- Cinnamon: High in antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, may reduce risk of heart disease, reduces insulin resistance, lowers blood sugar levels, may have beneficial effects on the progressive loss of the structure or function of brain cells (Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s), may protect against cancer by reducing the growth of cancer cells and the formation of blood vessels in tumors, and appears to be toxic to cancer cells, may help fight HIV.
It’s so important to be mindful of the ingredients we add to our dishes. I am sure after trying this recipe you’ll understand, when you realize how it makes you feel inside and out!
This Cozy Lentil Soup is so soothing you’ll be making it time and time again. In addition, it’s gluten-free, heart healthy, low fat, vegetarian, and vegan (unless you use chicken broth), but best of all it’s delicious!
Below is a video of how this wonderful soup comes together with the recipe to follow.
Cozy Lentil Soup
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oi
- 1 yellow onion, diced small
- Sea salt
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced small
- 2 celery stalks, diced small
- 1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1 cup dried green lentils, rinsed well
- 8 cups organic vegetable broth or chicken broth
- 1 cup tightly packed, stemmed, and thinly sliced kale
- Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or heavy soup pot over medium heat.
- Add onions and a pinch of salt. Sauté until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the carrots, celery, squash, and another pinch of salt (if desired) and sauté until all of the vegetables are just tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add curry powder, cumin, turmeric, coriander, cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and red pepper flakes and give a stir. Add the lentils and stir to coat.
- Pour in 1/2 cup of the broth to deglaze the pot, stirring to loosen any bits stuck to the pot, and cook until the liquid is reduced by half.
- Add the remaining broth. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Decrease heat to low, cover, and simmer until lentils are tender, about 20 to 25 minutes.
- Stir in the kale and cook until it’s tender, about 3 minutes.
- Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
- VARIATION: Substitute fennel, which is a good digestive aid, for the celery to add more depth to the flavor.
- Store in mason jars in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months.
- I used butternut squash but if you want you can use it's cousin, delicata squash.
Hungry for more? Savor these!
Kale & Cannellini Soup