Lentil Soup

October 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

Summer is coming! I can feel it in the air and see it in the dawn light waking me up at 5 am (come on, daylight savings). So why am I still making soup? Because you can’t be too careful, and this is Melbourne, and in no time at all I’ll be back under the doona covers reading YA fiction and wishing I had some soup.

This is a minestrone-like soup that is best with a few pork bones in it. Not a huge ham hock, just 2 or 3 of the small pork bones you can buy at the market, they should cost no more than 50 cents each and that’s paying too much. But if you have a bag in your freezer they do come in handy for dishes like this. If you can’t eat pork bones, leave them out, the soup will be fine in a simple vegetable soup kind of way.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 medium carrot, chopped
2 sticks celery, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon chili flakes
2-3 pork bones
1 large potato, chopped into larger chunks than the carrot and celery
1 tin tomatoes
2/4 cup brown lentils
2 teaspoons salt
plenty of ground black pepper
1/2 cup roughly chopped parsley

Parsley and lemon to serve

Put a large saucepan over medium heat and add the olive oil, then the onion and garlic. Allow to cook on medium-low for 3 minutes until softened slightly, then add the carrot and celery and bay leaf. Keep heat medium-low and put a lid on the pot to allow these to “sweat”, for another 3 minutes. Give it a good stir, turn the heat up slightly and add the chili flakes, the pork bones then the potato. Stir and cook for a couple of minutes.

Add the can of tomatoes, then two can-fulls of water. Pour in the lentils, the salt, grind in the pepper.

Bring to the boil then lower to a simmer, add the roughly chopped parsley and cook until the lentils and potatoes are softened. About 20 minutes. Remove pork bones from soup and throw them away. Taste for seasoning, and with the back of a spoon, crush a few pieces of the potato against the side of the saucepan, this will thicken the soup.

Serve with a little fresh parsley and a squeeze of lemon juice.

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