Confession time: I had never cooked with lentils until hearing the United Nations declared 2016 as the International Year of Pulses.
Yes, I know. Huge oversight on my part! As a proud Prairies girl who strives to put healthy and affordable meals on my dinner table I was shocked when I started to read about the benefits of these little seeds. They are packed full of protein and iron. They are sustainable. They are cheap. They are local. They are YUMMY! Already a fan of chickpeas I decided to sign-up for the Pulse Pledge and challenge myself to exploring new foods and flavours. The result? I am so happy that I did!
Filled with new found energy and enthusiasm, I ventured into creating a dish that put this ‘new’ super food front and centre. Naturally both gluten free and vegan, my Sweet Potato Peanut Soup Starring Canadian Green Lentils is the perfect flavour combination of sweet and spicy, nutty and earthy. Try it out and let me know what you think!
Sweet Potato Peanut Soup Starring Canadian Green Lentils
1 cup dried green Canadian lentils
1 yellow onion
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 jalapeño, chopped fine, seeds removed
2 sticks of celery
3.5 cups water
2 medium sweet potatoes (roughly 3 cups when chopped)
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 tablespoon cumin
½ tablespoon salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 small tin (396 ml) diced tomatoes with their juices
1 cup smooth peanut butter
- Cover green Canadian lentils with water in a medium sauce pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cover. Let simmer for roughly 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
- In medium sized stock pot, heat oil and onions until translucent. Add jalapeno and celery with a dash of salt (to allow vegetables to sweat) until vegetables are crisp.
- Add water, sweet potato, spices and tomatoes. Cook over medium heat until sweet potatoes are soft to the touch (about 10-12 minutes).
- Add peanut butter. Remove from heat and use an immersion blender to blend mixture into a fine puree.
- Return pot to medium heat and stir in prepared lentils. Let flavours mix for 10 minutes.
- Serve with crusty bread and garnish with more lentils!