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Lentil Soup with Bacon

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Bacon. I have fallen in love with bacon.

I go through these spells where I crave a certain thing all the time- one month it was sushi, one month it was soy sauce (gluten-free, of course!), another was cookies, now it is bacon. No worries, I am not pregnant. As long as I can remember, I have had these rotating cravings. Does anyone else have that? For example, I am craving eggs and ketchup at this very moment. Don’t knock it till you try it!

I am so glad to finally have my camera USB cord back! I left it in Jackson Hole and it is now back and safe in my desk drawer. I have whined about it the past few days on twitter – about my lack of cord=lack of loading pictures to my laptop.

This recipe is as simple as it gets- full of flavor and soul-soothing. Perfect for our cold Texas weather right now.

Ingredients:

  • 2 celery stalks, with leaves, diced
  • 2 large carrots, sliced in small circles
  • 1 red onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 russet potatoes, diced- or 5-6 small red potatoes, diced
  • 2 tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 1 lb. lentils
  • 1/2 lb. bacon, sliced into bite size pieces (*Note, if you are vegetarian, drop the bacon for olive oil)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 tablespoon marjoram
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • 2 pinches cayenne pepper
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 2 boxes chicken stock, or 8 cups homemade stock

Directions:

Pre-heat a large dutch oven (at least 5 quarts) on medium heat

Saute the sliced bacon in dutch oven until crispy, keep fat at the bottom of pan

Add all vegetables, except garlic, into pan and sauté in bacon fat until tender (about 10 minutes)

Move the tender vegetables aside-Pour 1/4 cup, of a good quality red wine to the bottom of the pan and scrape up all the delicious brown bits. (The brown bits on the bottom of the pan=flavor!)

At this time, also add the garlic. Saute for a couple minutes

Add in lentils, chicken stock and seasonings

Cook on low for 2 hours, stirring occasionally (this would also work in a crock pot, on low for 6-8 hours)

Adjust salt and pepper seasoning accordingly

Serves: 5, with leftovers!

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