RECIPESOCTOBER 4, 2013

welcome fall – with this creamy cauliflower + kale soup

To me, fall means changing colors, crisp weather, chunky sweaters – and soup season. When the weather dips, I pull out my boots, and get a pot of soup on the stove. I crave hearty, chunky, thick soups that are a comforting meal in a bowl: and this recipe fits the bill.

Cauliflower and kale are two of my favorite vegetables; the addition of red lentils lends a creamy, rich texture – plus a dose of plant-based protein. This is a good base to add different flavors. Try adding curry powder, oregano, or chili powder with the garlic to switch it up a bit.

The lentils will soak up all of the liquid – so you may need to add a bit more. Also, if you are making this ahead of time, it will almost take on the consistency of wet mashed potatoes. Add more water or stock to thin it before serving – or just spoon it into a bowl and eat as is. I’ve heard its great that way, too. Not that I would know about that or anything…

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder with Kale

Ingredients:

1 large head of cauliflower (or 2 small), cut into florets
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
pinch of crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
6 cups water
1 ½ cups red lentils
3 carrots, peeled and chopped into rounds
1 bunch of lacinato kale, stems removed and torn into bite sized pieces
salt + pepper to taste

Procedure:

Preheat oven to 400. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Reserve 1 cup of cauliflower florets. Place rest of cauliflower on a parchment lined baking sheet, toss with olive oil and a pinch of salt and roast for 40-50 minutes. Set aside.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and sauté until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and crushed red pepper flakes; stir. Add water and red lentils. Bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer. Add chopped carrots and cauliflower florets. Let cook until thick and lentils are soft, about 30 minutes. Add water to thin as necessary.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add in roasted cauliflower florets and kale pieces. Stir to combine. Add chopped parsley before serving.

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