When we all still lived at home, Sundays were soup days. I have vivid memories of my Mother cooking in our big old kitchen on most days, but Sundays seemed a little more leisurely because she was taking her time with a slow simmer of a savory soup. We all had bedrooms upstairs, so the aromas wafted up throughout the day, eventually swirling with the smell of fresh bread or maybe a roast chicken to accompany the soup. This particular recipe reminds me of one of those Sundays. The smells are so, so good and are only surpassed by just how good this soup is for you. It also just gets better the next day.
Makes 6-8 servings
- 2 T extra green, extra virgin olive oil, plus more for finishing
- 2 C diced white onion
- 1/3 C diced shallot
- 1/3 C organic celery, diced
- 3 T minced fresh garlic
- 5 C clear vegetable stock (avoid the orange-ish vegetable stock to achieve this green color) OR water
- 1-1/4 C French lentils (green or brown)
- 1 tsp toasted coriander seed, ground
- 1 T toasted cumin seed, ground
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 C cooked organic gold potato, diced
- 6 C fresh organic baby spinach, chopped (approximately 12 oz)
- 4 C fresh organic green chard, stems removed, chopped (approximately one large bunch)
- 3 C fresh organic broccoli, soft stems and florets, chopped (approximately one large bunch)
- 2 T fresh organic mint, chopped
- 1/4 C organic parsley, chopped
- 1 T kosher salt
- 1 tsp cracked black pepper
- 2 T fresh organic chives, chopped
- 1/3 C crumbled feta cheese (get a good feta from a cheese market. TJ’s has a good feta as well!)
- drizzle of extra green extra virgin olive oil
Rinse lentils. In a medium stock pot, add stock (or water), bring heat up to medium high and add rinsed lentils. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a low heat. Cover pot and simmer for 18 minutes. In a saute’ pan, on medium heat, add olive oil, onions, shallots and celery. Cook about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat medium low and add in garlic, coriander, cumin, and bay leaves. Cook another 3-4 minutes, stirring to keep from burning. Once lentils are cooked, you can add your aromatic and spice mixture (onions, shallot, etc.) to the pot of lentils. Add in diced potato and all your chopped greens (chard, spinach, and broccoli). Cover and cook for another 5 minutes. Add in mint, parsley, salt and pepper and last add in lemon juice and zest. Stir and ladle into warm bowls. Garnish with chives, more chopped herbs and feta. Drizzle with olive oil. Season with more salt if needed.
- Adding salt and/or acidic ingredients like citrus or vinegar too early in the cooking process, can keep lentils from entirely cooking. You can end up with a crunchy lentil rather than a tender lentil. So salt and squeeze with citrus or vinegar at the end of your cook time.
- Chicken broth can add a richness to this soup that you carnivores would enjoy. We like it with both broths. You choose!
- Making this recipe vegan, only requires omitting the cheese or using a vegan cheese.
- Using goat cheese in place of feta is also really tasty.
- A drizzle of green herb pesto or green herb pistou is ALWAYS a great addition. Possibly reduce your salt or omitting additional seasoning if you’re using a salted pesto.