January is National Soup Month and it’s not hard to see why. This month we’ve been thrust into a particularly brutal winter with Arctic blasts bringing extreme cold, winter storms so strong they’re given names, and whatever the heck a “Bomb Cyclone” is. Let’s just say, it’s been the kind of January where I’m glad I got long johns for Christmas.
Hands down, the best way to stave off the cold is soup. Soup is the cozy meal you look forward to while shivering at the bus stop on the commute home from work. Almost every culture has some kind of broth that helps warm the body and alleviates the pain caused by the sub-zero temperatures. The cumin, turmeric and cardamom in this Indian lentil soup bring extra heat. These spices help with cardiovascular circulation, which will help you stay warm long after you enjoy a hot bowl.
To make the soup creamier and smoother, use an immersion blender to puree the lentils at the end of the cooking time. (Or not. Some prefer the texture of lentils).
This recipe is courtesy of The Food Channel and is excerpted from Stock the Crock by Phyllis Good. Copyright © 2017 Oxmoor House. Reprinted with permission from Time Inc. Books, a division of Time Inc. New York, NY. All rights reserved. Recipe by Margaret H.
- 1 1/2 cups dried red lentils
- 7 cups vegetable broth or water
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
- 1 jalapeño, diced, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon ground tumeric
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 cups sweet potatoes, diced
- 1 cup green beans, chopped (fresh or frozen)
- 1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk
- Salt and black pepper, to taste
- 2 cups fresh spinach, chopped
- Chopped cilantro, for topping
- 1 Grease the interior of the slow cooker crock with nonstick cooking spray.
- 2 Combine the lentils and next 9 ingredients (through green beans) in the prepared crock.
- 3 Cover. Cook on Low 4 1⁄2 to 6 hours, or until the lentils have lost their shape and the vegetables are tender.
- 4 Stir in the coconut milk.
- 5 Cover. Cook on High for 15 minutes, until the soup, is heated through. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- 6 Just before serving, stir in the spinach. Cover and let the soup stand until the spinach is wilted, about 5 minutes.
- 7 Serve hot. Top with the chopped cilantro, if desired.