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Sweet Potato Soup

March 14, 2011

By Brianne Harrison Moore

Although the temperatures aren’t quite so bone chilling anymore, there are still plenty of damp days that make me long for a warming bowl of soup. This recipe was inspired by one I found on Chowhound; I added in some lentils for lean protein, to make it more of a meal. The result is a hearty, filling, and highly satisfying dish.

 

Sweet Potato-Star Anise Soup with Lentils

2T unsalted butter

¾ cup yellow onion, chopped

2 tsp fresh ginger, grated

4 star anise pods or 2 tsp star anise pieces

2 ½ lbs sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped

4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth

1 cup water

1 cup cooked lentils

 

Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. When it foams, add the onion, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.

Stir in 2 teaspoons of the ginger and the star anise. Add the sweet potatoes and stir to combine.

Add the broth and water and stir well, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Increase the heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until the sweet potatoes are completely tender, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat.

Allow the soup to cool slightly. Remove the star anise pods and discard. Process the soup in batches in a blender or food processor or with a hand-held immersion blender until very smooth. Return the soup to the pot and reheat over medium-low heat. Add the lentils and season with additional salt and pepper as necessary.

 

Healthy Roundup
Sweet potatoes are fairly low fat but high in dietary fiber. They’re also loaded with vitamins A and C, and they offer a healthy dose of vitamin B6 and potassium. Sweet potatoes are complex carbs, which means your body digests them slowly, raising your blood sugar gradually, so you feel satisfied longer.

Lentils are high in dietary fiber, which makes you feel fuller longer, provides steady levels of energy, and helps ferry cholesterol out of the body. Lentils also have high levels of folate and magnesium, which can help protect your heart, as well as iron, which is especially important for women to replenish. Unlike many other iron-rich foods, like red meat, lentils are low in fat and calories. They’re very high in protein—a cup of lentils has 17.86 grams of protein, which is nearly 36% of your recommended daily value.

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