* 1 cup of dried lentils
* 6 cups of beef, chicken, or vegetable stock
* 2 peeled and chopped carrots
* 3 stalks of chopped celery
* 1 can of diced tomatoes
* 1 small onion, diced
* 3 garlic cloves, minced
* 1 bay leaf
* 1 or 2 pinches of dried thyme
* tabasco, salt, and pepper to taste
* 3 tablespoons of olive oil
* Six slices of bacon (optional)
1. Clean and go pick through dried lentils
2. Put lentils, celery, carrots, bay leaf, thyme and stock in a largish pot and bring to a boil. Once it boils, reduce heat to low so the mixture can simmer.
3. Heat olive oil in a separate pan and add onions until they soften (5-10 minutes) and then add garlic and allow the garlic to cook with onions for another minute or two.
4. If using bacon, chop into little pieces and cook it in microwave (I use the pre-cooked bacon as it’s easier and less messy).
5. Add tomatoes and the onion/garlic mixtures. Add bacon (if using).
6. Let the mixture simmer for 30 minutes or more, or until lentils are soft.
7. Add salt, pepper and tabasco to your taste.
8. Adjust seasonings as needed.
9. Serve and eat with warm crusty bread.
10. Allow the soup to make you feel warm.
I hope you enjoy it!