lentil soup

I recently checked out Mad Hungry from the library. Man, it's a good cookbook! So far, I've made the blueberry muffins, breakfast sausage, and this lentil soup -- and I've copied several more recipes down for later. It's not the most beautiful cookbook around (I prefer more pictures) but the recipes have been winners so far and I like Lucinda Scala Quinn's style of writing and cooking.

This soup is delicious and hearty. I forget how rich and meaty lentils are -- and how cheap!

lentil soup
adapted from Mad Hungry
serves 6-8

3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 celery stalks, copped
3 garlic gloves, finely chopped
1/2 Tbs sea salt
1 small tomato, chopped
1 Tbs tomato paste
2 C green (or brown) lentils
1/2 teas dried thyme
1 small bay leaf
6 C beef broth (LSQ calls for chicken or veggie broth but I really liked the deep dark flavour of beef)
4 C water, plus more if needed
2 teas red wine vinegar

Heat large soup pot over medium-high heat and swirl in olive oil. Add the onion and saute until starting to soften. Add the carrots, celery, garlic and salt. Reduce heat to medium-low and saute until the vegetables are lightly caramelized (5-8 mins). Add tomato and cook for 2 minutes. Add tomato paste and cook for another 2 minutes.

Add lentils, spices, broth, and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until lentils are tender (about 20 mins). Stir in vinegar, thin the soup with more water if needed for desired consistency, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve in a bowl topped with fresh croutons if you'd like. (Check out this post if you're interested in making croutons.)

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