Garden Vegetable and Lentil Soup

Fall is about perfecting your curry, soup, and stew game for the upcoming winter and this soup gives a nod to both curry and stew with its flavoring and heartiness. Made to give a nod to your pantry and your garden, root cellar, and/or crisper, it can be tweaked to suit your tastes and what you have on hand.

Grating garlic and ginger with a microplane gives you consistent, fine grating without a lot of fuss or mess. If you don't have one, mince them both as finely as you're able to. Carrot and zucchini are excellent options for the early addition vegetables in this curry, but chopped bell pepper and butternut squash or diced sweet potato would also work beautifully. If you still have tomatoes from the garden, it's easy to work those into this dish instead of the canned fire-roasted ones listed. If you don't like chickpeas, use any other legume or just double the amount of lentils. Lots of flexibility here.

I just toast and butter naan and serve it alongside this soup. If you'd like it to lean more toward curry, stir in some steamed rice and add a dollop of yogurt. You get the idea. Make it yours and enjoy savoring it!

Garden Vegetable and Lentil Soup

  • 3 T. coconut oil
  • 1 ½ c. finely diced onion
  • 1 T. finely grated garlic
  • 1 ½ T. finely grated ginger
  • 1 c. coarsely shredded carrot
  • 1 c. coarsely chopped zucchini
  • 2 T. red curry paste
  • 1 T. yellow curry powder
  • 1 ½ tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • ½ tsp. ground turmeric
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) fire-roasted crushed tomatoes or 2 c. homemade crushed tomatoes
  • 1 c. uncooked red lentils
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) chickpeas, drained
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) coconut milk
  • 3 c.s stock or broth
  • 3 c. hearty greens (I used amaranth, but spinach, kale, or collard greens would work well)

Add the coconut oil to a large pot. Heat to medium and once the oil is shimmering, add the onion, garlic, and ginger. Cook and stir for 3-4 minutes. Add carrot and zucchini. Cook, stirring occasionally for another 6-8 minutes or until everything is golden.

Add the red curry paste, yellow curry powder, smoked paprika, ground cumin, and ground turmeric. Season with salt and pepper. Increase the heat to high, and stirring constantly, cook for 1-2 minutes or until very fragrant. Add the tomatoes and reduce the heat to medium. Stir and cook for 1 minute, scraping the bottom of the pot to release any browned bits.

Add the red lentils to the pot along with the can of chickpeas, the can of coconut milk and 3 cups of chicken or vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a gentle simmer. Cover with a lid and cook for 30 minutes, stirring every 8-10 minutes. Remove the lid and simmer for another 5-8 minutes or until the curry is thick and creamy and lentils are completely tender. If the mixture thickens too much, add a splash of broth or stock and if it's too thin (or lentils aren't tender yet), increase the heat a bit and simmer without the lid.

Add the hearty greens and stir to wilt. Taste and adjust any seasonings; add extra salt, pepper, or lemon juice if needed. Serve hot with steamed rice, toasted naan, or on its own.

  • Yields: 4-6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 45 minutes