Lentil and Bacon Soup
Our marvelous guest blogger Part-Time Veggie has posted a yummy soup recipe as part of our Winter Motivational blog series! Enjoy this hearty-healthy soup in this miserable weather!
I’m fairly new to soups. I know, that’s seems kind of weird, right? I write a health blog and soups are one of the easiest healthy meals to make. I blame it on the fact that I’m all about convenience. It doesn’t excite me to come home after a hard day’s work, dice up bunches of veggies and spend an hour cooking them down to a fragrant broth. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
I recently had an epiphany, though. What I should have been doing during my feet up, popcorn munching Saturday afternoon Grey’s Anatomy marathons, is putting the soup on to simmer before I clicked play. Because checking on a bubbling pot 4 times an hour while couch potatoing is doable.
So that is exactly what I’ve done today, only I’m blogging instead of watching Grey’s, because winter makes me lazy and I need to follow inspiration on the rare occasions that it strikes.
Here’s my easy, tasty recipe for homemade lentil and bacon soup.
Lentil and Bacon Soup
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, cubed
1 clove garlic, bashed (or 1 tsp crushed garlic)
3 carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 cups tomato puree (or crushed tomatoes)
1 1/2 cups lentils
• 6 – 10 slices of bacon (depending how much you love it!)
Salt and pepper to taste
• 6 cups chicken stock*
*I was a total overachiever this time and made my own chicken stock from scratch. This was because of a soon-to-expire pack of chicken stock bones in my freezer rather than a burning desire to be a smug Nigella-incarnate, but If you’re interested, it was actually really easy to make – I used Jamie Oliver’s recipe.
1. In a large pot, sauté the onions in olive oil until they are glossy. Stir in garlic, paprika, cayenne pepper, celery and carrots and sauté for 10 minutes.
2. Stir in tomato puree, chicken stock, lentils, salt, and pepper. Slowly reduce the heat and cook for 1 hour on low to medium heat; or until the lentils are tender.
3. Fry bacon in a separate pan and cut into bite size chunks.
4. Add bacon to soup and sprinkle with Parmesan if desired before serving.
Tip: The tomatoes will make the soup taste quite acidic in the beginning. If after cooking it down it is still too acidic for your taste, add coconut sugar (or brown sugar) one teaspoon at a time until the flavours are balanced.