Curried Sweet Potato and Lentil Soup

Yesterday, on the way home from language school I encountered the most enormous sweet potato I have ever seen. Being the thrifty girl that I am, I thought I should just pass her by (süßkartoffels are feminine in German*) and proceed to my standby lentils and rice for dinner, but somehow my lust for fall food got the better of me and I brought her home. But then, as so often happens when you bring an attractive stranger home, I didn't have any idea what to do with her. I delicately introduced the idea of a soup, but then thought it might be a bit vanilla. But then I remembered that sweet potatoes love coconut milk and curry.... and some lentils might go in for health and depth.

I ended up with the this perfect fall soup, a sweet and spicy way to please an enormous sweet potato (and I still have half of her left for tomorrow!)

Curried Sweet Potato and Red Lentil Soup

1 tbs. oil
2 Cloves Garlic, diced
1 Heaping Tbs. diced ginger
1 small onion, diced
1 small (tiny) dried chile, crushed. (optional)
1/4 tsp. Turmeric
1/4 tsp. Cumin
1 and 1/2 Tsp. Curry powder
1 Med. Sweet potato, peeled and cut into small chunks (about 2 C.)
1/2 C. red lentils, rinsed
3 C. Water + 1 cube veg bouillon (or 3 C. veg broth)
1/3 C. coconut milk

1. Heat oil over med heat in a medium soup pot. Add in garlic, ginger, optional chile and onions and cook for 3-5 minutes, being careful not to burn garlic.
2. Add in sweet potato and Turmeric, Cumin, and Curry powder, plus a healthy pinch of salt. Cook a few minutes more (browning sweet potatoes) then add in lentils and stir to coat.
3. Add in water and veg bouillon and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 15-20 minutes, or until sweet potatoes are easily pierced with a fork and lentils are soft. Add a bit more water if too thick for your tastes (lentils absorb a lot of the liquid.)
4. Remove from heat. Blend mixture with an immersion blender, leaving half chunky if preferred. Taste and adjust spices.
5. Gently stir in coconut milk and return to heat. Simmer another 10 minutes or until ready to serve.

Serves 2 for dinner, 4 for a starter


*The way that everything is gendered in German leads to strange sentences, where a child, being neutral, is referred to as "it", and a sweet potato, being feminine, is "her". So you could conceivably say, "Can it (the child) bring her (the sweet potato) to me?"

Song of the day: Celia Cruz- La Vida es un Carnaval


Vic Robinson said...

sweet potato and lentil? Nice combo! I never would have thought of that. :) It looks great.

Anonymous said...

Do you know how much I love sweet potatoes? That much! For reals, was so sad when there weren't any in the market last week, because I was craving sweet potato soup! Send me a bowl, K?

Mihl said...

Aw, Süßkartoffels sounds really sweet.
I recently had a pumpkin and lentil soup, I think I am trying this next.

Bianca said...

That sounds so delish! I like the addition of red lentils.

Addicted to Veggies said...

I love you for this blog ---
And this soup is inspiring!

Trinity (of haiku tofu) said...

That soup looks gorgeous! Great photo.

Anonymous said...

Very good T....loved the fact you called the sweet potato her....both orange and white sweet potatoes are excellent soup bases.
How are you getting through with the German?
Sorry I have to read back I have not been on blogs for a long time I am trying to catch up with your life.

jessy said...

your curried sweet potato 'n lentil soup is perfect for fall, indeed! the combination sounds soooo super delicious! i might even try this with a delicata squash or two. thanks, T!

Anonymous said...

I've made a similar recipe (chunky, not pureed). I added tomatoes, since I've always made curries with tomatoes. This is such a great flavor combo. I like mine really spicy, so I add more chile and roast the sweet potatoes before adding them to the soup. It adds a slightly different flavor dimension, and the sweet potatoes offset the heat. Yum! ANd completely unexpected.

Incendia Ignis said...

this may sound creepy- no, this is creepy- but you are my HERO! I love this idea; sweet potatoes and lentils are my two favorite ingredients to work with. Congrats on combining them both into a fantastic soup!

Anonymous said...

Made this tonite. Doubled the spices, but that's cause I used more broth. Lite coconut milk worked beautifully. Wonderful recipe!