OK, so I can't promise that by eating this soup you will live to 100, but sweet potatoes really are a superfood, packed with antioxidants, anti-inflammatory nutrients and blood sugar regulating nutrients. It is therefore no surprise that the people of the Japanese island of Okinawa, who are the longest lived (and healthiest) people in the world, live off a diet which includes a significant amount of sweet potatoes. Both the lentils and the sweet potato are complex carbohydrates, releasing energy slowly into your system (low GI). Sweet potato is also a great source of vitamin A (in the form of beta-carotene which is not destroyed by cooking). Vitamin A is vital not only for healthy skin and eyes, but also for the immune system and prevention of cancer cell growth. The spinach added at the end (to keep it's iron content) will help support your kidney and liver function as well as helping you avoid fatigue (Tip: if you feel tired a lot, upping the iron in your diet can really help - include vitamin C to help your body absorb it). Oh, and I did I mention this soup is souper-douper easy to make ('scuse the pun!)?
Ingredients (for 2 servings):
1 cup red split lentils
3 cups vegetable stock
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced
a bunch of fresh spinach and herbs of your choice, e.g. basil, parsley
Put all the ingredients, except for the spinach and herbs, into a pan, bring to the boil and then simmer for around 10 minutes until the sweet potato is soft. Take off the heat, add the chopped spinach and herbs and give it a whizz with a hand blender (if you don't have one, a potato masher will do the job). That's it!