It certainly doesn’t feel like Winter here in Texas, but that didn’t stop me from making two batches of this soup recently. But if the weather does happen to be chilly where you are, this Sprouted Lentil Soup with Pancetta and Kale is the perfect dish to help warm you up. It’s a very hearty soup that pairs perfectly with a nice big slice of cornbread.
If you aren’t able to find pancetta, you can certainly substitute bacon. I’ve made it both ways, and they were equally delicious! Also, you could use a different type of kale if you’d like. I just prefer the taste of Lacinato ( also known as Tuscan) Kale. Like all kales, it is extremely nutritious. Just one cup gives you more than 100 percent of your daily value of vitamins K and A, plus 88 percent of your vitamin C.
As usual, I used the TruRoots brand of sprouted green lentils. You don’t have to use sprouted lentils, but here’s a great article on the benefits of eating sprouted legumes. If you choose to use regular lentils, the cooking time will of be longer.
Sprouted Lentil Soup with Pancetta and Kale
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 5 oz . pancetta , diced
- 1 large yellow onion , diced
- 2 medium carrots , sliced thin
- 2 stalks of celery , sliced thin
- 3 cloves of garlic , minced
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- 2 cups sprouted green lentils
- 4 cups veggie stock
- 4 cups water
- sea salt and pepper to taste
- 1 large bunch of kale ( I used Lacinato Kale -also known as Tuscan kale)
In a large soup pot (4-5 qt.), heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the pancetta and sauté until crisp and brown. Using a slotted spoon, scoop the pancetta out of the pot and let drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Discard all but one tablespoon of the grease.
Add the onions, carrots and celery to the pot and cook until they begin to soften, about 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and dried herbs and cook for a minute more.
Stir in the water, vegetable stock and lentils. Add salt and pepper to taste, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and let cook for 25 minutes. Add the kale and continue to cook for another 15 minutes. Check seasonings and serve.