Lentil Bacon and Tomato Soup

It’s the end of January and it’s still 5 days till payday, yet we have no money in the house so we’ve had to get creative on the catering front.

I found myself a chicken at the bottom of the deep freeze and we had potatoes and carrots in the pantry so today is going to be all about my mums roast chicken dinner. I had £10 left for food for the week and that’s going to have to do for lunches and dinner so off into town I went yesterday.

Luckily we have a great little market in Brighton, which always has a reduced box so I managed to pick up onions, a head of broccoli and cabbage together with a pepper all for a £1 before heading along to morrisons, where I picked up 2 packs of oranges for £1 and a pack of coxs apples for another. My local butchers had a special on mince so I grabbed £2 worth to make bolognese and then headed to Aldi where I managed mushrooms, tomatoes, pears, a strudel and passatta all for £4. Not a bad haul for £9 but then I managed to pick up 2 bottles of coke for £1 on special which took the last of my money but was worth it!!

I headed home and today have spent the day cooking. I started off by making the bolognese, I had tinned tomatoes and the passatta to which I added carrots and mushrooms, as well as the red pepper to bulk it up which means it will feed us for at least 2 meals!! I prepped the veggies for tonight’s roast and then had a root around in the cupboards and found some puy lentils so decided to make a lentil, bacon and tomato soup…

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Ingredients

Fistful of bacon ends finely chopped
1 tbs olive oil & a squirt of garlic
1 onion & 3 stalks celery, chopped
2 medium carrots & 1 leek diced
1 can chopped tomatoes
Vegetable Bouillion & 2 pints of water
1 cup green (puy) lentils
Stalk of thyme & 2 bay leaves
Salt & ground black pepper
A few tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Method

Fry the bacon and garlic in a large pot over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the fat is rendered and the bacon is crisp, 4-5 minutes.
Add the olive oil, onions and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft. Add the carrots and leek, stirring constantly, and cook 1 minute more.
Next add tomatoes, lentils, thyme, bay leaves, then water & bouillon and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer until the lentils are tender, about an hour.

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