Friday, May 17, 2013

Spiced 3 Bean Soup with Collard Greens

A couple of months ago when Google announced it is going to discontinue it's Google Reader I started looking around for alternate rss readers and settled on Feedly . I have been using it for a month and has been good. It imports subscriptions from Google Reader so switching to it was quick and easy. Just saying, in case you were looking for a reader.

This soup came about because of a need to use greens and lentils/beans and avoid carbohydrates in the form of wheat or rice one night of the week.

Pretty simple and tastes even better the next day. Feel free to use any beans you prefer. I have used kidney beans, navy beans, black beans, chick peas all to good effect. I have used masoor dal which looks very similar to Puy lentils. Use one or the other.

Having ignored Collard greens for a good 10-15 years I have started cooking with it regularly now. Unlike most greens that wilt and get soggy once cooked, collards maintain their shape and methinks it is a good candidate for soups.

If you are not familiar with collard green (I am not sure if it is available in India) think of the texture of murunga keerai(drumstick leaves) or agathi keerai (humming bird tree leaves?!) leaves when cooked. Update: As per Anita's comment Kohl Rabi is a great substitute for Collard Greens.

Spiced 3 bean Soup with Collard Greens Preparation Time:15 minutes + soaking time for beans
Cooking Time:40-45 minutes
  1. 1 cup black beans soaked overnight
  2. 1 cup Masoor dal or Puy Lentils
  3. 1 1/2 cups Red Kidney beans soaked overnight
  4. 1 sweet potato (with white flesh) peeled and chopped into fairly big cubes (optional)
  5. 1 red onion chopped fine
  6. 5 garlic cloves minced
  7. 1 tbsp grated ginger
  8. 1 tomato chopped fine or 1 tbsp tomato paste
  9. 1 tbsp heaped curry powder or any masala powder (I used meat masala powder)
  10. 1 tbsp red chili powder or to taste or 1/2 chilli powder + 1/2 pepper powder
  11. 2 tsp cumin powder
  12. 1 big bunch of collard green (about 6 cups chopped leaves packed )
  13. 1 bell pepper or cherry pepper chopped
  14. salt to taste
  15. 1 tbsp olive oil
  1. Cook the Kidney bean and Black beans till they are half way cooked.
  2. Heat a wide mouthed deep bottomed pan (I used a Dutch oven) and heat the olive oil. When hot add the onions and garlic. Let saute till the onions become translucent.
  3. Add in the ginger and saute for a couple of minutes followed by the bell pepper, let saute for a few minutes.
  4. Add in the curry powder, chili powder and cumin powder and mix it well into the onion mixture.
  5. Now add the soaked masoor dal and saute for 3-4 minutes.
  6. Add about 3 cups of water and let it come to a boil. Continue to simmer till the masoor dal/lentils are almost cooked about 5-8 minutes.
  7. Add the kidney and black beans and let them cook for about 4-5 minutes.
  8. Add in the collard greens, salt and more water if required. (We like the soup fairly thick with just a little bit of the liquid, so adjust water accordingly.
  9. Let it continue to boil for another 20 minutes or so. Towards the end add the cubed sweet potato. Cook for 3-4 minutes more and turn off the heat. Let sit for about 10 minutes before serving. Toasted crusty bread goes great with the soup.


  1. Kohl rabi greens are a great substitute for collard greens. Rather, in the US I used to use collard when I needed kohl rabi!

    1. I have not come across kohl rabi while in India or rather am not sure what greens they are but I will update the post.


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