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Sweet Potato and Coconut Milk Stew with Lentils and Kale

Sweet Potato and Coconut Milk Stew with Lentils and Kale

This recipe was prepared by Chef Tammy Brawley on Real Virginia, Virginia Farm Bureau’s weekly television program.

Brawley, who holds a degree in culinary arts and owns The Green Kitchen in Richmond, Va., shares delicious seasonal recipes in a Real Virginia segment sponsored by Virginia Grown, a program of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.


Sweet Potato and Coconut Milk Stew with Lentils and Kale

1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
½-1 teaspoon dried chili flakes
½ teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
2” piece of fresh ginger, peeled and minced
3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
sea salt and ground black pepper to taste
1½ pounds or 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced into 1” pieces
½ cup brown lentils, picked over
4 cups vegetable stock
13.5-ounce can of coconut milk
1 small bunch of kale, stems removed and leaves chopped (about 4 cups)
chopped cilantro
chili flakes
lime wedges

Heat a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot over medium heat. Add the oil to the pot, and let it melt. Add the onion, and stir. Sauté the onion, stirring occasionally, until translucent and soft, about 5 minutes. Add the chili flakes, coriander, cumin and turmeric. Sauté the spices until very fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the ginger and garlic, and cook for another minute. Add a pinch of salt and pepper.

Add the sweet potatoes to the pot, and stir to coat with the spices. Add the lentils to the pot, and stir once more. Season everything liberally with salt and pepper. Add the vegetable stock, and stir, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Place the lid on top of the pot, and bring it to a boil.

Once the stew is boiling, lower the heat to simmer, and set the lid slightly askew so that there are a couple of inches for steam to escape. Simmer until the sweet potatoes and lentils are tender, about 30 minutes. The liquid should also be reduced by almost a third.

Add the coconut milk and kale to the pot, and stir. Place the lid on top, and continue to simmer the stew until the kale is wilted and bright green, about 3-4 minutes. Season the stew again with salt and pepper. Bring the stew back up to a strong simmer, and check for seasoning. Adjust with more salt, pepper and chili flakes if necessary.

Serve the stew hot and garnish with cilantro, chili flakes and lime wedges.