This soup is the best! My mom owns a catering business and her chef makes this for the cafe. Flavorful and hearty, even has a bit of a kick to it. Serve with warm crusty bread...a great meal on a fall/winter day.
- 1 lb dry lentils, rinsed
- 6 -8 ounces smoked ham, diced
- 10 cups water
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons ham soup base or 3 ham bouillon cubes
- 3⁄4 cup celery, diced
- 3⁄4 cup onion, diced
- 3⁄4 cup carrot, diced
- 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon oregano flakes
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Tabasco sauce, a few drops (optional)
- liquid smoke, a few drops (optional)
- In a stock pot, combine lentils, ham, water and base/bouillon and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat; simmer until lentils are tender, about 30 minutes.
- Add remaining ingredients; simmer until veggies are tender, about 20 minutes.
- If you wish to puree: remove 3 cups of lentils, broth and veggies (keep diced ham in soup pot); puree, return to soup and stir.
- For the crockpot: place all ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on LOW for about 10 hours; follow step #4 prior to serving.
This was excellent! I have been looking for a good lentil soup and have tried many different recipes. This is by far the best I have found. Instead of using ham boullion or ham soup base, I used low sodium chicken bouillion cubes. My picky husband even enjoyed this!
The flavor was excellent. My changes ... very few. I never use water in soup so I used veggie broth, I did use a ham base which I get from www.HealthyHarvest.com. I rarely use a soup base, but I like their ham base when I don't have a ham bone for stock. It is not as salty as boullion. I added 1 cup carrots, onion and celery. I love veggies, but that didn't change any flavor, and NO liquid smoke for me. The soup was good as is. It didn't need it. but did add the hot sauce as you mentioned. I love a little heat. I'm eating mine tomorrow night, but made a double batch. One for the lady I cook for the rest is mine. I served here a big bowl with a little grated cheese and a big piece of toasted Italian bread and a small salad. What a nice comfort food meal any time of the year. Most of my lentil recipes had tomatoes, so this was a nice change. Really good. Keeper!
I have wanted to try this for ages and am so glad I finally did. My first time to use ham soup base and I am sold on it. Adds a nice depth to the flavor of the broth. Doesn't compare to any bouillon I have used. I used Petit Jean Ham, an Arkansas product, which has an awesome smoky flavor. The soup was soul-soothing and one I will make again. Thanks.