Curried Tomato Soup with Fragrant Quinoa

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You can add plain cooked quinoa to soup just as you would plain rice or barley, but this recipe takes that to a whole new level, infusing the quinoa with ginger, star anise, and cinnamon.


  • For the soup
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 medium cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 Tbs. Madras curry powder
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 28-oz. can whole peeled tomatoes in juice
  • 4 cups lower-salt chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 Tbs. finely minced fresh ginger
  • 1 tsp. whole fennel seed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • For the quinoa
  • 2 cups lower-salt chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup quinoa, preferably white, well rinsed
  • 1 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 4 quarter-size slices fresh ginger
  • 2 whole star anise
  • 1 large clove garlic, lightly crushed and peeled
  • 1 3-inch cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Thinly sliced fresh cilantro or basil leaves


Make the soup
Heat the oil in a 4-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and curry powder and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft, about 4 minutes. Add the wine and boil to reduce by half, scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan, about 4 minutes. Crush the tomatoes with your hands and add them and their juice to the pan along with the broth, ginger, fennel seed, and 1/2 tsp. salt. Simmer for 10 minutes, season to taste with salt and pepper, and remove from the heat.

Make the quinoa and finish the soup
Combine the broth, quinoa, butter, ginger, star anise, garlic, cinnamon, cumin, and 1/4 tsp. each salt and pepper in a 2- to 3-quart saucepan and bring to a simmer. Turn the heat to medium low, cover, and cook until the quinoa is tender and the liquid is absorbed, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand for 3 to 5 minutes. Uncover, discard the aromatics, and fluff with a fork.

To serve hot, reheat the soup, stir in the quinoa, divide it among 6 bowls, and top with the cilantro or basil. To serve cold, chill the soup after adding the quinoa and garnish just before serving.