Cavolo Nero or “black cabbage” is rife in Tuscany; pastas, soups, stews its celebrated in all, in Florence I even lived across from a restaurant proudly named Cavolo Nero! In America they call this kind of veg “Dinosaur Kale” which sounds much more epic, and may help convert non- cabbage believers.
Like all leafy greens it’s incredibly nutritious and full of vitamins and photonutrients, here I combined the robust greenery into a spiced lentil stew. Nourishing and warming there’s hidden scents and flavours from the cardamon and star anise, while a squeeze of lemon and a dollop of yoghurt at the end really lifts it.
Free from gluten, dairy and Vegetarian.
Total Time 40minutes
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 stick of celery, finely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 red chili, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon tumeric
- 1 star anise
- 1 teaspoon cardamon pods
- 2 cups (350g) puy lentils
- 4 ½ cups (1 litre) vegetable stock
- 1 bunch cavolo nero, sliced
- juice of a lemon
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce (optional)
- To Serve:goat, sheep or coconut yoghurt and chopped coriander
- Start by heating a little coconut or olive oil in a saucepan and sautée the onion, celery, garlic, chili and tumeric until soft for around 8 minutes. Make sure it doesn't burn keeping it at low heat or adding a splash of water if it does start to get too hot.
- Add the lentils and stock, bring to the boil and then lower the temperature to simmer.
- After your lentils have been simmering for 20 minutes stir through the sliced cavolo nero and place the saucepan lid on for another 10 minutes.
- Before taking off the heat squeeze in the juice of a lemon and the fish sauce if using.
- Dollop a spoonful of yoghurt and a sprinkling of coriander before serving.
Note - If you can't find a sugar free, organic fish sauce you can always try anchovy sauce which doesn't have the sugar content.