Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Get Better Soon Soup: Spicy Lentil & Kale Soup

It may have been 81 degrees in San Francisco last week, but I was fighting a very nasty cold.

In an effort to kick said cold, I stayed home from work to relax and heal. But anyone who knows me, knows I am horrible at relaxing and sitting around doing nothing. So of course, I decided to cook. But only using ingredients that were already in my kitchen. Because I was too lazy to venture to the grocery store, naturally. Cooking is therapeutic, right?

I threw together a bunch of ingredients I had in my kitchen in order to make this soup. I wasn't planning to document it at all, hence the lack of pictures. However, this soup turned out amazingly flavorful, hearty, and healthy. I might declare it one of the best soups I've ever made. 

So as we enter the Winter season, or as I like to refer to it, the season of too-much sugar, tummy-aches, and flus, remember this soup.

This soup can cure people.

I topped my soup with a dollop of pesto I had left over in the fridge, as well as Siracha. Since we're approaching Turkey Day, you could even substitute the chicken sausage with leftover turkey. Yum!

Consider garnishing outside of the box bowl, with: Siracha, pesto, croutons, grated Parmesan or Pecorino. Did I mention Siracha?

But really, when is Siracha as a garnish not appropriate? 

Spicy Lentil & Kale Soup

2 tablespoons butter, ghee, or extra virgin olive oil
2 shallots, sliced finely
1 tablespoon minced garlic or 4 fresh cloves, chopped
1 bunch lacinato/dinosaur kale, leaves torn off of the stem
2 cups lentils (I used the pre-packaged Trader Joes lentils)
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth + 2 cups water
1/2 jalapeno pepper, finely sliced
2 chicken sausages, cut up into bite-size pieces (I used Trader Joes garlic-chicken sausages)
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons basil (I used dried, but you can use fresh leaves)
1 tablespoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 cheese rind, optional (I used Pecorino)
Sea salt & black pepper, generously, to taste

1. In a large soup pan, heat the butter over medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic, cooking for 5 minutes or so, til they begin to brown and the shallots nearly caramelize.

2. Add all the rest of the ingredients, except the salt and pepper. Stir everything all together. Place a lid on top of the soup pan and bring to a boil. Once the soup comes to a boil, reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes.

3. Once the soup is done simmering, turn the heat off. Carefully taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Serve and enjoy.

*This soup freezes well. I'll often put a serving side in a plastic bag and pop into the freezer for future cravings.


  1. This looks awesome and great for the Fall season! Thanks for the recipe!

  2. Yum! Can't wait to try making it!