My neighborhood internet message board is full of requests for homemade soups, as we’ve suffered from bone-chilling temperatures lately. Here’s something new to try with plenty of vegetables and a base of chicken broth. If you’re all-veggie, use vegetable broth, although the outcome may be slightly different. Use your own tastebuds to decide if you want a little more of this-or-that spice.

EQUIPMENT: 10-quart stock pot with lid, microplane, long-handled wooden spoon, peeler, chopping board, chef’s knife, collander, juicer, measuring equipment

Let’s get started.



16-ounce package dried lentils

6 ounces organic kale, chopped roughly

2 cups dried pasta, Rigatoni

1 ½ cups baby carrots, halved

1 medium yellow onion, chopped roughly

1 ½ cups raw sweet potato, 1-inch dice

3 ½ 32-ounce containers chicken broth

1 lemon

l large red bell pepper

2 Tablespoons garlic powder

1 ½ teaspoons ground thyme

2 bay leaves

1 teaspoon grated nutmeg

2 Tablespoons grated ginger

1 Tablespoon sugar

2 Tablespoons dried oregano

1/3 cup apple cider vinegar

olive oil

salt and pepper

In collander, rinse lentils. Set aside.

Prep vegetables.

In stock pot on medium, heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil until shimmering. Add onions, lightly salt and sweat about 5 minutes until onions are translucent. Add bay leaves, oregano, nutmeg, thyme and garlic powder. Stir and heat about 2-3 minutes. Pour in chicken broth, lemon juice, 1 Tablespoon salt and lentils. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer covered 5 minutes.

Add kale, sweet potatoes, carrots and bell peppers, plus sugar and grated ginger. You may want more salt and pepper, so taste and add 1 teaspoon at a time. Bring to a boil and add pasta, turning heat to medium-high to maintain the boil without the soup juice popping all over your stovetop. Check on pasta’s tenderness at 8 minutes. If it’s al dente, turn off the heat, add the vinegar and cover while you get ready to serve. The pasta will be more tender by then, not overcooked.