And besides being delicious, this soup offers massive amounts of nutrition and is totally free of added fats. Lentils provide great protein, and like beans, are a great source of iron and fiber. Kale is one of the most nutrient-dense foods available. And kabocha squash is a great source vitamins, fiber, and healthy carbohydrates. It is my favorite squash; it is sweet, dense, and vibrantly orange. And best yet, you don't have to peel it - the skin softens during cooking and is totally edible. Feel free to substitute Hubbard, Buttercup, or another dry-fleshed winter squash in its place if you'd like. Full of fiber, protein, and loads of vitamins and minerals, this soup is easy, totally delicious, and lovely to behold.
yield: 4-6 servings
1 c dry French green lentils
Soak the lentils in water for 4-6 hours. Rinse.
Place prepared onions, celery, and squash in slow cooker. Add lentils, bay leaf, thyme, and savory. Add 4-6 cups water, enough to cover ingredients by a couple inches. Cover, and cook on high for 5-6 hours, until lentils are soft but still intact. Do not uncover until the very end!
Before serving, thinly slice kale. You now have two options: steam kale until tender, about 5 minutes, then add to soup. Or, add raw kale to slow cooker, cover, and let cook 10-15 minutes or until kale is tender.
Add salt and pepper, or more thyme/savory, to taste. Let cool a few minutes, then serve. Would be delicious with a spoonful of yogurt or kefir (dairy or non-dairy, as you desire) swirled in the top. An original recipe by Kim Christensen of www.affairsofliving.com.