My first flu of the season finally hit me last week. I thought that maybe with a bit of extra sleep and some strong multi-vitamins, I could escape the aching muscles, sore throat, fever and chills that strike me every year. No such luck! There was absolutely NO amount of vitamin C that could keep me from succumbing to this nasty flu’s wrath! All I needed was a few days of rest wrapped in my blanket, sipping on hot ginger tea with a spoonful of honey.
Even though I didn’t have much of an appetite, my body craved nutrients – a bit more than chicken broth and throat lozenges could provide. With comfort food in mind, I remembered a wonderful lentil soup I used to make when I was living in Montreal.
Hearty and full of flavor, this soup totally fits the bill when you’re craving something that’s good for you and tastes great. Ginger, curry, and cumin give the soup some welcoming heat, while sweet potatoes add texture and flavor to compliment the lentils.
You can serve the soup on it’s own, or top with a generous spoonful of yogurt. If you’re a fan of fresh coriander, like I am, you can add it as a garnish for extra flavour. I use French Puy lentils for this recipe, but have used regular lentils and they work just as well (you will have to increase the cooking time slightly if using regular lentils). The soup keeps well in the refrigerator for a few days (if it lasts that long!). Enjoy it hot, and add some extra ginger if you want to keep your sniffles at bay!
Curried Lentil Soup with Sweet Potato and Ginger
Serves 4 to 6
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
- 2 to 3 teaspoons curry powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 cup of “Puy” OR regular lentils (rinsed, picked over, and any stones removed)
- 1 medium sweet potato, cut into cubes
- 2 tomatoes, chopped
- 4 cups of chicken stock OR vegetable stock
- Plain yogurt-Greek or regular (optional)
- Fresh Coriander (optional)
- Salt and pepper
Heat olive oil in a pot large enough to accommodate your ingredients. Add onion, garlic, and ginger, sauté for five minutes until translucent. Add curry and cumin powders and cook for one minute (add a little bit of water if the spices are sticking to the pan).
Add the lentils, sweet potato, tomatoes, stock, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and let simmer for 40-50 minutes, until the lentil and sweet potato are cooked through. Taste for seasoning, add more salt and pepper if necessary.
Divide mixture into serving bowls, and garnish with yogurt and coriander (if using). Serve hot and enjoy!