Lentil Soup with Sausage

Today was wonderfully cool.

I spent a lot of the day outside, and it was as pleasant as its been in weeks.

When the temperatures drop about 10 more degrees, I’m going to make this soup.

Unfortunately, I think they are going back up this weekend, but soon, very soon,

we’ll be eating soup!

I’m keeping this one marked to be first in the pot.

Lentil Soup with Sausage

1 lb dried lentils

2 Tbsp. olive oil

3 large yellow onions, diced

2 large leeks, cleaned and chopped (white and light green parts only)

2 cloves garlic, minced finely

1 Tbsp. kosher salt

1-1/2 tsp. freshly-ground black pepper

1 Tbsp. minced fresh thyme leaves

1 tsp. ground cumin

3 cups diced celery

3 cups diced carrots

3 quarts chicken stock

1/4 cup tomato paste

1 pound pre-cooked kielbasa sausage, chopped into 1/2-inch chunks

2 Tbsp. red wine or red wine vinegar

Place the lentils in a large bowl and cover completely with boiling water. Allow the lentils to stand for 15 minutes, then drain in a colander.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions, leeks, garlic, salt, pepper, thyme and cumin. Cook until vegetables are very soft, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Add the celery and carrots and cook another ten minutes until the carrots are softened. Add the chicken stock, tomato paste and drained lentils. Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low and allow to simmer, uncovered, for one hour or until the lentils are completely cooked through.

Taste, then add salt and pepper as necessary. Add the sausage and red wine, cooking another 10 minutes until the sausage is warmed through and the flavors meld.

Makes 10 servings.

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