Fall is in full swing, which means the air is getting thinner, the days shorter, and the weather colder. What better way to nourish oneself than a hot bowl of soup.
Kale and quinoa make a good pair (aside from being somewhat trendy these days). Not only are they both incredibly nutritious, but they also add nice texture to soup. Kale is one of the few greens that can hold its own amidst warm broth. And quinoa is an amazing (and often underused) thickener to soup broth. [in fact, the most traditional use of quinoa in bolivia is to fortify soups! The more you know... Right?].
This kale and quinoa soup uses white beans for protein - you could also add textured vegetable protein or your favorite veggie crumbles for texture. The spices approximate the taste of a good sausage (think portuguese kale and sausage soup vibes), except with waaaaaay less-processed ingredients and sodium - plus, it's vegan-friendly. The key to getting that sausage flavor is garlic and anise seeds. Trust me!
1/2 cup of dry Toasted Quinoa
2 cups of vegetable broth + 1 cup of water
2 cloves of garlic, pressed
2 potatoes, cubed
1 can of white beans
3 cups of raw kale, chopped
1 tbspn of olive oil
1 tbspn of tomato paste
1 tspn of anise seed
1 bay leaf
herbs to taste (marjoram and thyme are recommended)
crushed red pepper to taste
2 tpsn of kosher salt (or more, to taste)
Add oil to soup pan, turn on medium heat. Add anise, red pepper and garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add potatoes and cook for 10 minutes. Add stock, water, tomato paste, bay leaf and quinoa, bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and cook for 15 minutes with the lid partially covering pot. Remove from heat, stir in chopped kale. Cover pot until kale wilts. Garnish soup with salt and savory herbs (I used marjoram and thyme) and serve. Buen provecho!