Back in the early nineties the Palouse region, where I live, was dubbed the “Lentil Capitol of the World“. At that time, 97% of all lentils were grown in this region. Since then, it has slipped from being the largest producer, (I believe it may be Montana now) but you will still hear locals brag about their once claim to fame. The Lentil Festival in Pullman commemorates the mighty lentil every fall by holding a festival full of activity; everything from a tent set up to commemorate what it takes to farm this favorite legume, to a large beer garden with live music. The legendary Lentil Cook-off inspires cooks from all over the USA to try their hand at submitting the winning lentil recipe. Last year 127 recipes were submitted from over 32 states! Click here to enter the 2013 Recipe Contest. But the signature part of the festival by far is the serving of a bowl of free lentil chili from the world’s largest lentil chili pot, over 350 gallons! Now that’s a lot of lentils!
With 16 grams of fiber, the lentil packs a good dietary punch. This recipe I’m sharing is not a chili, but one of the most delicious lentil soups I’ve ever eaten. A few interesting ingredients give this bowl a burst of flavor. You may have noticed I use a lot of kale in my recipes. Even though it’s extremely rough, it softens greatly during the cooking process and adds some nice color. It does lose a bit of nutritional value during the cooking process, so if you don’t like it in your salads, consider pulverizing it in a fruit smoothie to receive its valuable benefits. There are many varieties of kale, including ornamental, which is edible too! Still unsure about kale? Click here to read about its awesome benefits. You just might change your mind.
Beautiful ornamental/edible kale. Can you tell it’s from the cabbage family?
Colorful Red Chief Lentils-rinse thoroughly to remove any residue (approx. 5 minutes). Place in a pot with 1 inch water
covering the lentils. Bring to a bowl then simmer for approximately 15 minutes.
Place chopped scallions (green onions) and garlic into a large pot with two tables olive oil. Saute 1 minute.
Add carrots, kale, and 1/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth (I used chicken) and saute until carrots are cooked through.
Add pre-cooked chopped turkey or chicken sausage, all spices, and stir.
Pour in three cups chicken or vegetable stock.
Add almost cooked lentils to pot. You want to add the lentils and the water they were cooked in while they are still slightly crunchy.
Red lentils have a tendency to turn slightly mushy if they are overcooked. Add one chopped Roma tomato.
Serve immediately and enjoy this little bowl of nutritional confetti.
Red Lentil Soup with Sausage and Kale
3 scallions & stems chopped
1 large carrot chopped
3 garlic cloves minced
3 kale stalks chopped
1 Roma tomato
2 cups dry red lentils
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tsp turmeric
salt to taste
1/2 tsp pepper
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp spicy brown mustard
1 tsp Worcestershire
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
This recipe was also posted on cookingTF.com , simplysugarandglutenfree, glutenfreehomemaker, butterbeliever.com and vegetarianmamma.com