The heartiness provided by the kale and lentils brings "comfort" right into this soup and packs in a great amount of energy. I think most of the spices and amounts of garlic can be modified to suit your own tastes, which is why this soup can be so versatile. You could even add chicken stock if you just can’t go without and I think it would turn out great!
In a large saucepan or a stockpot combine the lentils, garlic, basil, thyme, parsley, onion flakes, tomatoes, bay leaf, and water (more or less depending on desired soup thickness). Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally. Lower to a simmer and cook uncovered until the lentils are soft, at least 1 hour.
Add the kale and cook on low until the kale starts to wilt, about 10-15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve immediately.