Photo: Penny De Los Santos
Hands-on Time
20 Mins
Total Time
3 Hours
Makes 8 servings

My Uncle Paul and Aunt Sonia Bontemps, who helped found an African-American genealogical society, took Grandma on a trip to revisit the scenes of her youth and explore our family history. One myth, which can't be proved, is that the Bontemps family descended from Madagascar. The possibility encouraged us in the exploration of Madagascan foodstuffs and foodways, culminating in this hearty and healthy recipe.

How to Make It

Sauté garlic in hot oil in a large saucepan over medium heat 1 minute; add 1 tsp. dried crushed red pepper and next 4 ingredients. Cook 1 to 2 more minutes or until fragrant. (Toasting the spices opens up their flavor.) Stir in Sweet Potato Broth, coconut milk, and greens. Bring to a gentle boil; add chickpeas. Reduce heat to low, and simmer about 1 1/2 hours or until greens are soft. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Recipe adapted from Soul Food Love, copyright 2015 by Alice Randall and Caroline Randall Williams. To be published by Clarkson Potter on Feb 3, 2015.

Ratings & Reviews


September 26, 2015
This soup was--yes!--hot on the palate but it was also delicious! I had an international friend for dinner and served this to him, and he told me it had very authentic South African flavors. It's a bit time consuming (when I make the broth, I make two batches and freeze one), but I found the end product very satisfying. The flavors are unique and exotic. I will definitely make this again. I'm so happy to have this recipe! Thank you.

VERY Hot & Spicy

August 19, 2015
My husband suggested we try this recipe since I don't eat meat. Unfortunately I couldn't eat it because of the intense (for me) heat level. I should've reduced the amount of red pepper flakes.  He ate 2 bowls but admitted it didn't have much flavor.  So he bought some chicken breasts to cook in a curry sauce & add to what is left of the soup.