If you follow my blog, you might have noticed my affinity for lentils. I really do love them! They are an excellent source of protein, fiber, and complex carbohydrates. Lentils are incredibly nutrient dense. They contain iron, potassium, magnesium, zinc, and B vitamins. They are also a low-glycemic food, meaning lentils do not spike blood sugar. Plus, they're super inexpensive and can be easily adapted into soups, salads, stews, and can be blended into spreads or dips. If you haven't tried lentils yet, what are you waiting for?
A few weeks ago, I posted a recipe for butternut squash and red lentil soup. This time around, my soup includes hearty and robust brown lentils, loads of leeks and leafy greens. On cold days, this soup will warm you up, fill you up, and will make your belly very happy.
Give it a try and let me know what you think. See below for the recipe.
HEARTY LEEK, LENTIL & LEAFY GREEN SOUP
2 tablespoons, extra virgin olive oil
3 leeks, ends trimmed (keeping the white and pale green parts), halved lengthwise, thinly sliced
2 carrots, peeled, chopped into bite sized pieces
2 ribs of celery, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon, cumin
1 tablespoon, herbes de provence (or a spice mixture of your choice including herbs such as savoury, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, and oregano)
A pinch or two of red pepper flakes (or more if you want a spicier soup)
3 medium sized potatoes (of your choice), roughly chopped to the size of a dice
1 cup brown or green lentils, picked over and rinsed
1 or 2 bay leaves
6 cups, water
1 28 oz (796 ml) can of diced tomatoes
2 loosely packed cups, leafy greens (I used kale), stems removed, ripped into bite sized pieces
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
Warm the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the leeks, carrots and celery with a big pinch of salt. Stir often, until the vegetables have softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, herbs de provence and red pepper flakes. Stirring constantly, cook until fragrant, for about 30 seconds.
Add the potatoes, lentils, bay leaves and water. Raise the heat and bring the mixture to a boil, then partially cover the pot and reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook for 30 minutes, or until the lentils are tender but still hold their shape.
At this point, you can add the tomatoes and give the soup a stir. Add the kale, mix well, and cook for a few more minutes. Taste your soup for flavour and season with salt and pepper. Remove the bay leaves, then serve immediately.