This hearty lentil soup features a slew of compatible ingredients, including potatoes, cauliflower, and spinach or arugula. It all melds together in a garlicky, mildly curried broth. Add a fresh flatbread and a simple salad for a satisfying meal.
- 1½ tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 4 to 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup raw brown or green lentils, rinsed
- 2 large celery stalks, diced (peel away strings if desired)
- 6 cups water
- 2 large or 4 medium potatoes, scrubbed and diced
- One 16-ounce can salt-free diced tomatoes, undrained
- 2 to 3 teaspoons good-quality curry powder, or to taste
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 3 to 3½ cups finely chopped cauliflower pieces
- 2 to 3 big handfuls clean fresh baby spinach or arugula leaves
- ¼ cup minced fresh cilantro or parsley, optional
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Dried hot red pepper flakes to taste, optional
- Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the onion and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté until both are golden.
- Add the lentils, celery, garlic, and water. Bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes.
- Add the potatoes, tomatoes, and curry powder, turmeric, and nutmeg, and simmer until the potatoes are about half done, about 10 to 15 minutes.
- Add the cauliflower pieces. At this point, you may need to add more water. Add a cup at a time, enough so that there's room for the ingredients to simmer, but let the soup remain dense.
- Simmer until the lentils and vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes longer.
- Stir in the spinach or arugula and optional cilantro or parsley. Adjust the consistency with more water once again as needed, then season with salt and pepper. If you'd like to give the soup a bit of heat, add hot pepper flakes (or pass them around when serving the soup). Simmer over very low heat for 5 minutes longer.
- Serve at once, or if time allows, let stand off the heat for an hour or so, then heat through before serving.
Per serving: 219 calories; 4g fat; 12g protein; 13g fiber; 39g carbs; 49mg sodium