Butternut, Swiss Chard, and Lentil Soup

Butternut, Swiss Chard, Lentil soup

The idea for this Butternut, Swiss Chard, and Lentil Soup came from a problem. The problem of “I have a whole lot of swiss chard… now what?” And so this soup was born. Sometimes solutions to problems can be pretty delicious, yes?

Butternut, Swiss Chard, and Lentil Soup

Ingredients

  • Extra virgin olive oil

  • 1/4 cup diced yellow onion

  • 6 whole black peppercorns, crushed or 1/8 heaping tsp. freshly-ground black pepper

  • 2 whole cardamom pods

  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder

  • 1 cup diced butternut squash

  • 2 tbsp. lentils

  • 1 1/4 cup vegetable broth

  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt, plus more to taste

  • 3-5 chard leaves, cut into 1 inch strips, about two cups

  • 1/4 tsp. apple cider vinegar

Directions

  • Place a three-quarter quart or one-quart saucepan over medium heat

  • Once hot, add enough olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan and add the onions. Cook until translucent.

  • Add the freshly ground black pepper, garlic, and cardamom pods to the onions and stir. Once you smell the black pepper toasting, add the squash, lentils, and vegetable broth and stir. Taste the broth and add salt as necessary.¬†

  • Bring the soup to a simmer and cook for ten minutes or until the lentils are soft.

  • Remove the soup from the heat, fish out the cardamom pods, and discard. Place half of the soup in a blender, and pulse until smooth. Pour back into the saucepan, bring to a simmer and cook for five minutes. In the final minute, constantly stir to help the soup reduce.

  • Add the chard to the saucepan and cook until wilted. Add the apple cider vinegar and salt to taste.

    Enjoy!

    Notes:

    • This recipe uses this Homemade Vegetable Broth, but you can buy your own instead.
    • When you add the swiss chard to the saucepan, it will look like there is too much. But I’ve learned that you need a lot more than you think you do when cooking with greens.
    • The water released from the chard dilutes the soup’s flavor, so be sure to taste it often and add salt according to your taste preference.
    • ¬†Vinegar brightens the flavor of food, so if the soup still tastes flat near the end of cooking, add a few drops of apple cider vinegar, stir, and taste.

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