Sweet Potato, Carrot & Red Lentil Soup

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She woke me up and crawled up close to me. Lift my arm and put it around her. She was silent for 10 seconds, completely still, but I could hear her thinking. We were looking at the window and how the sun was shining through the curtains. Then she asked me: “Daddy, explain why you like me so much?”.

Her voice didn’t reflect any doubt. It was more out of curiosity that she asked. Completely unprepared, I pinched myself to wake up and tried to give her the best explanation and love declaration that I could possibly think of.

I told her that she was the kindest little person I knew. That I loved how she always shared a piece of her bread or cookie without hesitation, and how she often made sure that there was something left for me or her mom if we weren’t home. I told her that from the moment she was born she had climbed into our hearts and that she would be there for the rest of our lives, no matter how much we argued about brushing teeth, choosing clothes or watching cartoons. I told her that I couldn’t not like her, even if I tried. I hugged her closely.

I was quiet, curious to hear her reaction, if she was satisfied with my response. I could hear her thinking again.

“Daddy, I think my favorite color is pink!” She crawled out from my arms, jumped up from the bed and ran out of the room screaming: “Good morning horses, heeeeeere I come!”.

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Later that day we all made soup. The kind that is thick, sweet, comforting and perfect for chilly days. It was filled with sweet potato, carrots and red lentils and had the brightest orange yellow color. Even though it was delicious on its own, Luise created a tasty aubergine and kale topping that gave the soup an extra dimension. You should give this soup a try on a cold day. It’s a love declaration to winter that will warm your hearts.

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Sweet Potato & Red Lentil Soup with Aubergine & Kale Topping
Serves 4

1 tbsp ghee, coconut oil or olive oil
1 large onion
2 sweet potatoes
4 carrots
4 sprigs fresh thyme or 1 tsp dried thyme
1 cup / 250 ml uncooked red lentils
4 cups / 1 liter water
sea salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste

Aubergine & Kale Topping

1 tbsp ghee, coconut oil or olive oil
1 aubergine/eggplant
4-5 stems fresh kale or thawed frozen
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground cumin
sea salt & fresh ground pepper, to taste

Heat oil in a pot. Add onions and sauté until fragrant. Add sweet potatoes, carrots and thyme and cook for a minute or so, while stirring. Now add rinsed lentils, water, sea salt and pepper, cover and let simmer for 20-25 minutes until the vegetables and lentils are soft.

Meanwhile make the topping. Heat oil in a large skillet, add aubergine/eggplant and kale and all the spices. Sauté for about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the aubergine/eggplant are completely soft.

Use an immersion (hand) blender to puree the soup. Taste and adjust the flavors. Serve the soup in bowls with a couple of spoonfuls topping, a good drizzle of olive oil and a few leaves of fresh thyme.

83 Comments

  • sarah
    Love this soup, I have made it a few times now, and always just hits the spot. Though i have to confess i didn't bother making the topping. I loved the fact there were only a few ingredients. If i was serving this to friends I would try making the topping, and maybe some homemade bread - do you have an easy home made bread recipe? thanks :)
  • GG
    It took two days to get the soup right and was it good. The best soup I have ever made. I added chopped red bell peppers, fresh sliced garlic and one zucchini. I halved it lengthwise and then sliced into half moons. I removed a lot of the carrots a next time will only use one small carrot. I used garnet sweet potatoes. The first day I added one Turkish bay leaf and one cube chicken bouillon. But what took this pot of soup to the top was adding hot madras curry. Thank you so much for the recipe. It was divine. I bottled it and will eat it all weekend. It's supposed to snow. And I'm going to make sweet potato biscuits to go with. I didn't need to use my burr. The texture was perfect. Thanks again. xoxo
  • GG
    I will look for changes to recipe. Not giving up yet. I tried making red lentil soup and today I am trying to fix it. It would have helped me to have had directions to follow. And so I messed it up. I am going to try to resurrect it with curry and zucchini squash. Thanks.
  • Michelle Johnson
    Hi, I am new to vegetarianism and a friend put me onto your blog - thank goodness for her and you guys!!! I have just made the broccoli bread, humus and the kumera. carrot and lentil soup! all a great success. I am looking forward to this journey now - with your help and insight fullness x
  • Janna
    Hi David, Luise and Elsa Today was the first fairly cold day in the Netherlands... I'm so very glad that I made this soup, it is very, very delicious and indeed hart-warming, just like your stories about your family :) Very good combination with the kale and eggplant! I also made the Decadent Beet and chocolate cake today, tomorrow i'm going to try it, realy looking forward to it. Thank you ever so much for your recipies!
  • Nancy Belz
    Thank you for this beautiful recipe. I made it yesterday on a 32° hot day here in Australia. As you can tell I'm a huge lover of soups to cook in this heat. My only additions that were a little different, were three cloves of sliced garlic, chilli flakes to taste, and freshly chopped parsley to finish. I have frozen some for future meals. I can't wait to have another served tonight of this tasty soup!
  • Louise
    What a BEAUTIFUL, heartfelt tribute to your daughter. You have a lovely way with words. The soup looks beautiful too, going to make it in a minute :) Thank you for brightening up my day!
  • This sounds lovely. Going to give this a go. thanks for sharing this recipe. Simon
  • This looks awesome! I was tempted by your asparagus, fennel and spinach soup and then I got distracted by this one! Can't wait to give both of them a go. The ingredients and topping ideas sound perfect :)
  • I can across your post because I had carrots, sweet potatoes and lentils I wanted to make into soup! We live in the Med so the weather opportunities for soup seem sometimes limited :-) Your beautifully presented blog caught my eye. The soup is now on the stove cooking (Thankyou) and I am looking forward to the best bit about soup - sharing it with those you love. I look forward to more inspiring foodie posts.
  • Stephanie
    I made the soup the other night, and my husband and 16 month old boy absolutely LOVED it!!! I did too of course and am planning on making it again this week!! thanks for another great recipe! Stéphanie
  • Olivia Boe M.
    Such a beautiful post! I am gonna make this beautiful soup for my birthday, so i have a question: Can i make it the day before and then just warm it? Thank you. Love to you and your family Olivia /Denmark
  • Daniel
    I made the soup and it is absolutely delicious, as I am a student I made the whole batch to save money, and ended up eating more than half of the whole batch!!! Absolutely delicious, not even know how to explain it! Thank you so much!! Dani
  • Daniel
    Hi! I am buying sweet potatoes tomorrow so that I can do it, looks awesome! I had one question, when you say simmer, do you mean you put the pot to the highest setting, and when its boiling you take it to the lowest setting and cover it letting it simmer??? Thank you loads! Dani
    • Hi Daniel, we rarely set the stove on the highest setting as it is more difficult to control the heat. But yes, we put it to a boil and then lower the settings so it cooks slowly.Hope you will like it! /David
      • Daniel
        Thanks for the quick answer! Would the water not take ages to start to boil though?? Can I boil the water in a kettle and then put it in the saucepan with the rest of the ingredients? Thank you!
  • Hilary
    Has anyone made this in the crockpot? Just wondering how it might turn out. Sounds delicious!!
  • Carolina
    Just made this soup...amazing!!!! Thanks for sharing :)
  • Giulia
    What a lovely recipe - I tried and loved it. So nutritious! Thank you. A (mexican) variation of this soup replaces the topping and thyme with honey (1 tbsp), the juice of 1 lime and adds coconut milk / or yogurt and fresh cilantro.
  • kate
    One thing that I do with red lentils is soak them, usually just overnight, or for 5 or 6 hours. Be sure to rinse the heck out of them before soaking, as it gets all the starch out. Drain and rinse again. Then sprout them, it won't take long, a day and a half or so. And when you see the little tails appear, time to make the soup!!! So much nicer that just cooking the lentils straight out of the bag....
  • Yonna
    You think I could make the soup, as well as the topping, in advance? I would like to make this as an entrance to a 3 course menu for 8 people (maybe adjust the portions too?). Thanks for your reply!
  • I absolutely adore this recipe and my Fiancé asks me to make it all the time!

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