- 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 carrots, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, sliced
- 1 onion, chopped
- Salt and pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 1 can (28 ounces) whole tomatoes, with their juice
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup lentils, picked over and rinsed well
- 1 tablespoon wine vinegar
- In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, onion, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, and bay leaf, and cook until vegetables begin to soften, 2 to 3 minutes longer.
- Add tomatoes with their liquid, breaking them up with a large spoon. Add water and lentils, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, partially covered, until lentils are tender, about 30 minutes. Just before serving, stir in vinegar.
Cooking times for lentils can vary from 20 to 40 minutes depending on how fresh they are. The older the lentils, the longer they take to soften.