Prep 30 mins
Cook 1 hr 15 mins
A hearty lentil and vegetable soup, fragrant with rosemary, sage and bay.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 1 carrot, finely chopped
- 2 celery ribs, finely chopped
- 1 white onion, finely chopped
- 1 leek, finely chopped
- 12 ounces brown lentils, soaked overnight
- 1 rosemary sprig
- 1 sprig fresh sage
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- 1 1⁄2 pints vegetable stock
- 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 6 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
- salt & freshly ground black pepper
- Warm the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the chopped vegetables, cover and cook gently for about 5 minutes until translucent.
- Drain the lentils and add to the vegetables. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring.
- Tie the herbs together with string to make a bouquet garni. Add to the pan along with the vegetable stock.
- Bring the soup to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer over a medium heat for 1 hour, until the lentils are very soft, skimming away any impurities which rise to the top.
- Discard the bouquet garni and set aside 4 spoonfuls of lentils as garnish.
- Purée the soup in a food processor or blender, then push through a fine sieve. Pour it back into the pan, add the vinegar and season to taste. Bring back to the boil.
- In a separate pan, gently warm the reserved lentils. Stir in the parsley, then spoon the mixture into the centre of individual soup plates.
- Pour the soup round the edge and drizzle with olive oil.