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Savory Lentil Soup with Ham

Updated on February 20, 2015
This recipe can be cooked down to your desired consistency.  Cook it quick and leave it soupy, or let it simmer into a hearty, thicker-style porridge.
This recipe can be cooked down to your desired consistency. Cook it quick and leave it soupy, or let it simmer into a hearty, thicker-style porridge. | Source

Preparing Dried Lentils

Empty a bag of dried lentils into a container. Pick them up a handful at a time, look them over for rocks, and throw them in a strainer. Rinse and they're ready!
Empty a bag of dried lentils into a container. Pick them up a handful at a time, look them over for rocks, and throw them in a strainer. Rinse and they're ready! | Source

Favorable Flavor and a Friendly First Encounter

Whether you set out looking for a tasty way to prepare healthy lentils, or just have no idea what to do with the bag of dried lentils sitting in the back of your cupboard, this easy recipe offers a well-rounded homestyle flavor using savory vegetables, herbs, and ham.

Prep and Cook Time

Prep time: 30 min
Cook time: 1 hour
Ready in: 1 hour 30 min
Yields: makes 6 - 8 bowls of soup

No spices? No problem!

Spices in this dish are optional. For example, I prefer the taste of marjoram in ham soups but if you don't have it, try something else! If you don't have them, you can leave them out altogether. This is just how I season it for the way I like it to taste, but herbs are versatile - be adventurous!

Chop up some meat and veggies, and add them all at once - easy!
Chop up some meat and veggies, and add them all at once - easy! | Source

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. dried lentils, sorted and rinsed
  • 1/4 lb. baked ham, cubed
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 cubes chicken bouillon
  • 6 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp dried marjoram
  • 1/2 tsp - 1 tsp salt, to taste
  • 1/4 - 1/2 tsp black pepper, to taste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
Sort lentils, chop veggies, add water, and throw it all together in a sturdy soup pot.
Sort lentils, chop veggies, add water, and throw it all together in a sturdy soup pot. | Source

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in soup pan. Saute ham, onion, carrots, celery in heated oil until softened and onions turn translucent (rather clear) in color.
  2. Add remaining ingredients: water, bouillon, lentils, and spices. Stir. Bring soup to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and cover.
  3. Stirring occasionally, let simmer 20-30 minutes for a soupy mixture, or for about an hour for a thicker dish. Be sure to simmer on very low heat, taking care not to scorch the soup.
  4. Remove bay leaf and serve.

Lentils are healthy and hearty. With easy and delicious recipes that combine familiar flavors with less familiar ingredients, incorporating healthier options into our every day dishes can be something we WANT to do. Enjoy!

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