Post-collage Root Vegetable + Lentil Soup

Julie's Kitchen//Root Vegetables

If you’ve ever wondered what happens to my food collages after I photograph them, wonder no longer. The answer is that I eat them up. Every last scrap. If I’m making a morning food collage, the food often ends up in a frittata. It’s already prepped and ready to go straight from collage to skillet. If I’m food collaging in the afternoon, many times it ends up in a salad or a hearty soup like the root vegetable and lentil soup I’m sharing today.

Julie's Kitchen Food Collage

Here are roots in a rainbow of colors from the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market. We have turnip, black radish, green, garlic, carrot, scallion, daikon, leek, sunchoke, baby potato, celeriac, and rutabaga. I shouldn’t have favorites. But I do. Ever since I listened to this Science Friday podcast about nutrition and how black, purple, and blue foods are the healthiest, I’ve really been digging black radishes and purple carrots. It’s worth a listen.

Julie's Kitchen//Root Vegetable + Lentil Soup

I used the root vegetables from the collage (except for the daikon) for this soup, but it’s very flexible. So, feel free to use more carrots for a sweeter soup or bump up the celeriac, sunchokes, or potatoes for a creamier one.

Root Vegetable + Lentil Soup


2 tbsp olive oil

2 lbs, root vegetables, in 1/2″ chunks

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1.5 cup of red lentils

1 14.5 oz can of fire roasted tomatoes

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

2 quarts filtered water

salt and pepper

Optional Garnishes

chopped parsley


chili oil



1.Place the olive oil into a large 6-quart Dutch oven and set over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion, root vegetables, garlic, and salt and sweat until the onions are translucent, approximately 6 to 7 minutes.

2. Add the lentils, tomatoes, water, spices, and pepper. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil.

3. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer until the lentils are tender (about 30 to 40 minutes).

4. Puree in a blender until velvety smooth.

5. Serve immediately. Garnish with scallions, croutons, chili oil, and parsley, if desired.

serves 6-8


  • rebecca

    24 Mar 2014 02:03 am

    this is just devine! Food meets art – I love it!


  • Food is Medicine | Meg Atkin

    18 Jul 2014 07:07 am

    […] Why do you eat food? Have you ever really stopped to think about it? Most of the time it seems like we only eat food because we like the way a certain thing tastes, because it looks good, or because it is readily available, fast, cheap and easy to make. We eat food to survive, to stop the 4pm ‘munchies’ and to look trendy in over-priced restaurants and cafes. In today’s society, particularly in the west, we judge a food’s ‘healthiness’ based upon its supposed weight loss benefits, fat content and calorie intake. We eat food because it is deemed ‘healthy’ by the dieting industry. We get sucked into crappy media advertisements, which have anything but the consumer’s health in mind, and then we eat products because we are promised fake energy, sexual desire, popularity, strength, peace of mind, and concentration…. you name it, they’ve used it.   What ever happened to eating foods that heal your body? Eating for nourishment, clear skin, strong nails, white eyes, healthy bones and vitality. Before the introduction of refined sugar, artificial flavourings and store-bought cookies that can last on your pantry shelf for years, food was used more like medicine. The focus was on the quality of the food as opposed to the quantity and people ate to nurture, harmonise and fuel their bodies. In some cultures, food choices were even made based upon the unique energy and individual characteristics of each type of food (hot/cold, sweet/bitter, nutritional value), and how these energies interact with and move throughout the body. Imagine that! Actually listening to what your body needs, eating seasonally, eating slowly, and savouring every mouthful. Empowering yourself with food, instead of with money, clothes, expensive cars, technology, large homes and triple deluxe cheeseburgers. For all of our modern scientific knowledge, you would think that we would be the healthiest beings to ever live, not the largest group to ever slowly die of poisoning and overeating.     But it is not all doom and gloom (thank god!). There are still people, like you and me, who choose to lead a more holistic lifestyle. Who choose to go against the grain and wander down the supermarket aisles reading the ingredients list religiously. There are people who eat organic, non-genetically modified food and are attempting to overthrow the world’s largest pharmaceutical and farming companies everyday. There are families who turn their backyards into veggie gardens, and scientists, naturopaths, writers, health experts, dieticians, bloggers, healers, film makers, chefs and ordinary working class people who devote their entire lives to changing the way we think about food. Hopefully one day the minority will become the majority, we’ll all be eating organic food, growing veggie gardens and drinking green juices, and my mantra will become everyone’s mantra. That’s the dream! Image credit: Julie’s Kitchen. […]

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