1 Cup Brown Lentils
1 Cup Red Lentils
2 Litres of Chicken stock
4 Rashers of rindless Bacon (bacon sliced into small pieces)
2 Tablespoons of Tomato Paste (heaped)
1 Teaspoon of Smoked Paprika
1 Spanish Onion
1 Clove of Garlic
1 Cup of Celery (top bits roughly chopped)
1 Zucchini (diced)
1 Parsnip (diced)
1 Carrot (diced)
1 Chilli (cut into small pieces)
1/2 Cup of Parsley (roughly chopped )
1/2 Cup of Basil Leaves (roughly Chopped)
4 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to Taste
Preparation Time: 2 hours (includes preparing the vegetables)
Serves: 4-6 People
In a large pot over a medium heat, heat the olive oil and fry the chopped onions until translucent for a few minutes, add the bacon, garlic and chilli, continue to cook until the onion, bacon, garlic and chilli start to brown slightly. Add the tomato paste and continue to cook for a few more minutes. Remove the pot from the heat to stir in the paprika. Place the pot back onto the stove to further cook the tomato paste and paprika and then add the chicken stock. Add the other ingredients, brown lentils, red lentils, zucchini, parsnip, carrot, celery, parsley and basil. Cover with the lid and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce the heat when the soup starts to bubble away, allow the soup to simmer for 1 1/2 hours. Add salt and pepper to taste.
When cooking smoked paprika it can burn easily and that will change the flavour. It’s best to remove the pot from the heat and mix in the paprika before placing the pot back onto the stove to cook a little longer.
It takes approximately 15-20 minutes to prepare all the vegetables and once the soup is on the stove simmering away, you can leave it, checking on it occasionally to give it a little stir.
The chilli that I used, is from my garden and it is very hot. You may wish to use a milder chilli such as Cayenne. Or even chilli flakes or powder if there are no fresh chillies available. You may also wish to use other types of stocks to flavour the soup, beef, veal or vegetable.