New Years French Lentil Soup
This works for vegetarians, too. Just leave out the bacon and ham, and substitute 2 tablespoons of olive oil to sautee the vegetables. Liquid Smoke flavoring makes a great addition, and it's vegan.
4 ozthick sliced pepper bacon
4 ozcountry ham
1 Tbspolive oil, extra virgin
1 conion, chopped
1/2 ccarrots, chopped
1/3 cgreen bell pepper, chopped
1fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1 1/2 cgrape tomatoes
1 1/3 cfrench lentils, dry
4 cchicken stock, no salt
1/4 cfresh basil or parsley, chopped
How to Make New Years French Lentil Soup
- Chop the bacon and ham into small dice.
- In a medium skillet over medium heat, cook bacon and ham in the olive oil until bacon begins to crisp. Add in onion, carrots, green pepper, and Jalapeno pepper. Continue cooking until onions are wilted and translucent, about 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Stir in tomatoes; cover, and lower heat. Simmer about 15 minutes, until tomatoes burst and release their juices. Keep warm over low heat.
- Wash and sort the lentils to remove any debris. Place lentils and the chicken stock into a 2-3 quart slow cooker on high. Stir in bacon and vegetable mixture. Add water if necessary to fill slow cooker at least 2/3 full.
- Cover and cook on high power for 3 hours.
- When lentils are soft but not mushy, the soup is done. Stir in the basil or parsley and allow flavors to blend for 10 minutes. Cooker may be turned to low and soup kept for 2-3 more hours until serving time. Top servings with fresh ground black pepper if desired.