Curried Red Lentil, Chickpea And Kale Soup

This healthy Indian-inspired red lentil soup is enticingly aromatic and flavorful. I prefer sweeter red kale, but any type will do. You can also make this soup with Swiss chard or collards.

Curried Red Lentil, Chickpea And Kale Soup i i
Susan Russo for NPR
Curried Red Lentil, Chickpea And Kale Soup
Susan Russo for NPR

Makes 4 to 6 servings

For The Soup

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large yellow onion, diced

2 medium carrots, peeled and diced

2 celery stalks, diced

1/2 bunch red, green or dinosaur kale, washed, trimmed and finely chopped (about 2 packed cups)

1 cup red lentils

1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained

4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth

1 (15-ounce) can light coconut milk

2 teaspoons hot curry powder

1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds

1/2 teaspoon garam masala

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced

Several shakes of salt, to taste

For Garnish

1/4 cup lightly toasted unsweetened shredded or flaked coconut

2 tablespoons roasted unsalted peanuts, finely chopped

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, warm olive oil. Add onion, carrots and celery. Saute until golden, 5 to 7 minutes. Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add kale and boil for 2 to 3 minutes, then drain. (This will make it more tender). Add drained kale, lentils, chickpeas and broth to the carrot mixture; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer 12 to 15 minutes or until lentils are tender.

Let soup cool before pureeing. Pour half of the lentil mixture into a blender and puree. Pour pureed lentil mixture into a bowl, and repeat process with the remaining soup. Once the soup is blended, return to the pan. Add coconut milk, spices, ginger and salt. Stir well. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated through. Remove from heat, and season to taste with salt. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with toasted coconut and peanuts.

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