Granted, the term winter, in Northern Baja, should really be called ‘winter’ compared with many parts of the northern hemisphere during this time. That acknowledged, it is still the time for growing ‘winter vegetables’ – among them, kale, which seems to do quite well amidst the challenges of my rocky, nutrient-deprived soil.
So, I’m often looking for new ways to use said kale, since I tend to have an abundance of it. With a bit of help from my good friend google, I came across this recipe for Spiced Red Lentil, Tomato and Kale Soup, which I modified somewhat. It was, I have to say, surprisingly delicious.
Spicy Kale Soup (with potato and tomato)
1 onion, thinly sliced4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
A bit of oil
A bit of red wine
1 stalk of celery, sliced
3 bay leaves
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp paprika
1 small bowl full of sun dried tomatoes, re hydrated, with their juice (I did not have a can of tomatoes as the original recipe called for, so I used the sundried garden tomatoes that I had, soaked in boiling water – they added a nice flavor. But, if you have actual tomatoes, or a can of tomatoes, use what you’ve got.)
A bit of chipolte salsa (I used Herdez)
2-3 cups of vegetable broth, or, lacking vegetable broth, water
1/2 cup red lentils
1 cup diced potatoes
1 big bunch of kale, thinly sliced – use amounts to your taste
Saute the onion in the oil, adding garlic after about 5-6 minutes. If it begins to dry, add some red wine so that it doesn’t stick. After the onions and garlic become soft, add all the spices, and a bit more wine, to keep it from sticking. Add the celery. Add the salsa, to taste.
After a few minutes, add the tomatoes, lentils, potatoes and water/broth. Bring to a boil. Then simmer until the potatoes and lentils soften – about 20-25 minutes.
When it is just about ready, add the kale, stirring it in to soften it.
Serve in a bowl with grated Parmesan or crumbled goat cheese. It is also nice over rice.