Three years ago, when I first moved to France, kale was absolutely no where to be found. It was a forgotten vegetable that most people had never even heard of. Choux Kale? Ein? Now, kale is popping up everywhere you look. And this week, for the first time, my little organic weekly market had gorgeous bunches of curly green kale. The vendor was so totally stoked on it, telling everyone what it was, its high content of vitamin K, and that it is pretty much magical. I had a lovely little chat with a lady about how I like to cook it, and what to do with it. She grabbed a few bunches and went on her merry way. It was a big moment for our little market. So today, I’m sending out big hearts and happy vibes to Kristen, from The Kale Project. You have taken this little leafy green and turned it into a real community and you totally rock my world. It just proves that no dream is too little or too big, and that committed motivated people can bring about real change in this world. Thanking you from the bottom of my kale-fed soul.
I’ve been feeling a little under the weather lately, having trouble shaking off a persistant cough. I can be a bit stubborn when it comes to being sick, I hate admitting that my immune system has let down and usually try to just ‘power through and get over it.’ It’s not my best of qualities. Pretty sure Matt has been secretly drugging my tea in order to get some medicine in me. I guess I can’t really blame him. But I finally admitted defeat and big bowls of this soup are keeping me well fed, plus mega shots of straight up ginger juice chased by spoon fulls of raw honey, (not the worst of diets). Potatoes might not be the stars of the superfood world, but we eat our fair share during the winter months. I am a real believer eating with the seasons and as local as we can (as cliché as that has become) and spuds are cheap, filling and offer up the most comforting of nourishments. Plus they are a plenty up here in the mountains. Adding lemon or other citrus to a winter vegetable soup can really help lift the heaviness and adds tons of brightness. I guess you could say this is a bedazzled version of your traditional leek and potato soup. Winter comfort for happy hearts + warm souls. Take care of yourselves, friends xx
LEMONY KALE + POTATO SOUP WITH CARAWAY SEED DUKKAH
Your well known leek and potato soup with a little extra jazz. I actually prefer the taste of this soup the next day, as it thickens and gains more depth of flavor, however you loose out on that vibrant green color if you don’t eat it right away. I add the kale at the every end, I love the texture it adds, but if you prefer a smoother soup you can it in earlier so it has more time to wilt.
Dukkah is a lovely spice blend to have on hand. This is my favorite combo as of late. Sprinkle it on soups, sprinkle it on salad, on roasted root veg or simply to dress up avocado toast. Play around with nuts, seeds and spices to create a home blend you love.
Vegan + Gluten Free. Serves 6.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 medium leeks, white and light green parts only
3 1/2 cups potatoes, peeled + chopped
Sea salt + pepper
6 cups low sodium organic vegetable stock, or homemade
1 bunch curly kale, about 6 stalks
2 handfuls each fresh flat leaf parsley + chervil
Zest + juice of one organic lemon
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
1/2 tablespoon coriander seeds
1/2 tablespoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon ground sumac
To make the dukkah, add the sesame seeds to a small pan and toast until brown and fragrant, a few minutes being careful not to burn. Remove from pan and place in a small bowl. Add cumin, caraway, coriander and fennel to the pan and toast until fragrant, about 1 or 2 minutes. Let cool. Then add half the sesame seeds and all other seeds to a small blender or spice grinder and pulse to break up just a bit. Place everything in a bowl and stir in the sumac. Done.
For the soup, thinly slice the leeks and wash to remove any dirt stuck between the layers. Add a good lug of olive oil to a heavy bottomed pot and sautée the leeks until soft. Add the peeled and chopped potatoes and stir to coat in oil, then season with salt and pepper. Cover everything with stock and bring to a boil. Keep at a gentle boil for until the potatoes are soft and tender and easily pierced with a fork, about 30 minutes. Remove the kale leaves from the woody stalks and give the leaves a rough chop, add the to pot and stir to combine. Boil gently until just starting to wilt, 5 – 10 minutes. Remove from heat, taste and adjust seasoning if needed, then let cool slightly before blending.
Blend the soup using your preferred method, I like a high speed blender. Adding in the fresh herbs, lemon juice and zest while you blend. Return to the pot, warm through if needed, and serve with dukkah, extra lemon zest, cracked black pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.
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