Traveler’s Stew (aka Sweet Potato, Lentil and Turmeric Stew) // Caroline

 

Truth be told, lentil soup was always kind of blah for me until one day I made this and now I think its the most delicious thing ever…so if you have ever felt blah about lentil soup don’t give it up until you’ve tasted this. Plus eating lentils brings you good luck! Okay, maybe that’s just at the new year, but I like to think its true always.

I’m naming it Traveler’s Stew because I’ve made this soup a couple of times now and without being conscious of it, I realized I’ve made on the night of arrival for two different sets of friends who’ve traveled a little ways to visit me.  The name is also fitting because its a hearty soup that fills you up and grounds you after being stuck in a car for a while. It also has fresh turmeric in it, a natural anti-inflammatory for knees and bodies that have been sitting for too long. (Also gives a nice orangy color).

A side note here is that a lot of recipes will call for ground ginger and ground turmeric. If I can help it, I always prefer fresh. It just tastes better to me. But feel free to use ground if that’s what you have.

Also – I apologize not having a photo, still getting my act together on that part, but  its still SO good so if you try this soup make sure to take a photo for me 🙂 🙂 🙂

Sweet Potato, Lentil and Turmeric Stew

Serves: 4-6            Prep Time: ~20 min.    Total time: ~ 1 hour (but the soup is just simmering for most of that!)

Ingredients:

1/4 cup sunflower oil (or olive)

1 medium onion diced

1 cup brown/green lentils

1 can diced tomatoes

1 large knob fresh ginger (double size of thumb), grated or finely minced

1 knob fresh turmeric, (size of thumb) grated or finely minced

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon. cayenne

salt

4 medium sweet potatoes, chopped into ~3/4 inch cubes

7 cups veggie. broth (low-sodium or homemade if possible)

1 cup lentils, (brown or multi-colored)

Half-bunch Lacinato kale, chopped or shredded

Directions 

Heat up the oil. Add onions and cook until they are soft and smell yummy (about 4-5 minutes). Stir in the tomatoes and ginger and cook for 3 minutes longer. Stir in the rest of the spices – turmeric, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, cayenne, and a small pinch of salt. (I like to get all my spices together in a bowl before hand so I can just dump them in all at once.) Cook and stir for about two minutes then add the sweet potatoes, broth and lentils. Stir well and bring to a boil. Reduce, heat, cover and let simmer for 35-50 minutes or until the sweet potatoes and lentils are both soft (in my experience cooking time really varies here depending on stove, heating setting etc). Add the chopped kale in the last five-ten minutes of cooking so it gets wilted a bit.

I ate mine with fresh, crusty bread baked my sister.

-Caroline

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