Set a 4 or 5-quart saucepan over medium heat and add the ghee. While the ghee is heating, season the chicken with the garam masala and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Once the ghee is hot, add the chicken and cook, turning often, until golden brown and fragrant, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside to cool.
While the chicken is cooling, add the onions, carrots and celery to the hot pan and saute until lightly caramelized, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger and apples to the pan and saute until the apples are caramelized, about 7 to 8 minutes. Add the potatoes, sweet potatoes, and lentils to the pan, along with 4 cups of the chicken stock. Raise the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook the soup until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Add the reserved chicken, the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, the pepper, remaining 2 cups of chicken stock, zucchini, squash, spinach, coconut milk, and tomatoes. Continue to cook the soup at a simmer until the lentils and chicken are both tender, 10 to 15 minutes longer. Remove from the heat and stir in the cider vinegar. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary. To serve the soup, place 1/4 cup of the rice in a warmed bowl, and pour 8 ounces of the soup over the rice, garnish with a tablespoon of the cashews, and 2 teaspoons of the cilantro.
Recipe from Emeril Lagasse