Ethiopian Red Lentil & Collard Green Stew

Easy and delicious one pot, or even two pot soups, totally rock my socks off.

And I’m not even wearing socks.  Because the calendar says it’s *cue Dr. Evil air quotes* “November”…but it’s 84 degrees outside and I yam sweating.

I mean, on a scale from 1 to Britney-with-no-hair, how crazy would I look if I started blasting christmas music in my apartment right now?

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I’m gonna do it.

And my neighbors will have to deal with the musical manifestations of my semi-psychotic winter wonderland hopes and dreams.

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Moving on, I am souper excited to share this cozy, filling stew recipe with you today. It was inspired by a trip to an Ethiopian market a few weeks ago.

Ethiopians make a lot of vegetarian one-pot stews (called Wat) and use a lot of lentils, collard greens, and fiery spices like Berbere (a mixture of cayenne pepper and ginger)!

My kinda peeps…basically.

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This flavorful soup combines toasted red lentils, stewed leafy collard greens, and a variety of zesty spices that will warm you up and nourish you from the inside out. The beautiful part about soup is that you can basically use whatever vegetables you have on hand. I happened to have a lot of leftover green beans and bell peppers, sooo I tossed zem in!

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Feel free to substitute something different like mushrooms, tomatoes, or corn. Just sub in the same amount instead of the green beans and bell pepper!

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Ethiopian Red Lentil & Collard Green Stew

makes about 6-8 servings, about 180 calories a cup

  • 1 cup dried red lentils
  • 8 cups veggie broth
  • 1/2 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup green beans
  • 6 cups collard greens, chopped and rinsed
  • 3 T olive oil
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 T turmeric
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast (optional, but of course recommended)
  • 2 T chili powder
  • 2 T dried thyme
  • 2 T cumin
  •  1 T red chili pepper flakes (use less if you prefer less heat) (weenie) (totally kidding)
  • salt/pepper (use at your discretion…)
  1. Grab your biggest pot! Pour 1 T of the olive oil into the bottom and add the onion and garlic.  Saute over medium high heat until they become pretty soft and tender.  Then add in the bell pepper and cook for a couple more minutes.
  2. Toss in the dried red lentils and stir them along with the veggies for one minute. Add in the green beans and the veggie broth and bring it all to a boil!  Once boiling, reduce heat to simmmmmmer and cook for about 20 minutos.
  3. While the soup is bubbling, grab a deep pan and bring it to medium heat.  It may appear you have a plethora of collard greens, dear chef, and this is very true.  However, these greens will cook down a lot.  Just trust me 😉 Once zee pan is hot enough, pour in the remaining 2 T of olive oil and toss in the collard greens and lemon juice.  Add a little salt and pepper (about 1/8 tsp of each) and saute until greens become soft and wilted.
  4. When the soup has been cooking for about 20 minutes, add in the wilted collard greens and the spices.  I am not sure which veggie broth you are using, some have higher a sodium content than others.  So, add in all the spices and save the salt and pepper for last.  Simmer for 10 minutes over medium heat and then taste your soup.  If it tastes bland at all, salt is your new BFF.  Add in salt in 1/2 tsp increments until you get the taste just right. Add in pepper this way, too.
  5. Voila. Look at you, you stew-master, you. And cheers to, Africa, thank you for your delicious meal inspiration.
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