Lentil & Veg Soup
This is one of those ‘dishes-that-can-pass-as-a-two-course-meal’ soup. It’s hearty, robust and will probably be a hit with meat lovers as well. It’s also a very forgiving soup, as most ingredients are the kind that one almost always has on hand. And of course, you don’t have to go by the book with it, feel free to substitute ingredients to suit whatever veggies you might have laying around in the fridge.
I made this soup to serve four and there was plenty left over for the next day. I have to say the soup improved overnight, so perhaps if you want to, you could make this a day ahead for optimal taste. I used a dutch oven for this recipe, but any kind of large pot will do just fine.
Lentil & Veg Soup
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Two garlic cloves, finely chopped
One yellow onion, diced
Two celery stalks, diced
One large carrot, peeled and diced
One 400g/14 oz. can chopped tomatoes
1,5 Liters/6 cups vegetable stock (preferably unsalted or low sodium)
250g/1 cup lentils, rinsed and drained
Two bay leaves
Salt and pepper, to taste
A bunch of chopped parsley leaves, to serve
Freshly squeezed lemon juice
Place the olive oil and the garlic in a dutch oven or in a large pot set over medium heat. Cook for 3-4 minutes. Add the onion and sweat for around 5 minutes, until it becomes translucent. Add the celery and the carrot, along with a pinch of salt and cook for an additional 5-7 minutes, until softened. Add the tomatoes and press down with a wooden spatula to break them up. Allow to cook for about 10 minutes. Next add the stock, lentils and bay leaf and bring to a boil. At this point, you should taste for salt and add more if needed. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and let simmer, covered, for one hour, until the lentils have fallen apart. Remove bay leaves, add freshly ground pepper to taste, then ladle into bowls and serve topped with parsley and a squeeze of lemon juice, if desired.