In winter there is nothing better than a bowl of warm, comforting soup. I adapted this recipe for red lentil soup from my friend Camilla. It is the only way I will eat lentils.
Our Boxer dog Scarlett has numerous beds. In the morning when we go to work she heads off to her basket that is on the patio. This is undercover and she is quite happy to sleep there. We have a kennel as well, but I am sure the dogs don’t bother to go into it. During the day Scarlett will move around, depending on the weather and who is where. She likes to sleep on the ottaman in the dining room, with her head on the window sill. This allows her direct line of site to the gate. She will also sleep there when we have guests over for dinner. At night she has a choice of two beds in the lounge. The one is a cushion I made for her, that was meant to be for upstairs.
The other is a basket which is situated between the couches Dave and I sit on. Scarlett has also commandeered the trampoline as a bed. She will try and get onto that while I am exercising. And if I move to the yoga mat she takes that over as well! Then there is her bed in the garage. Some of you might know that Dave and I sleep in a loft room above our garage. At night when Scarlett is tired and ready for bed she takes herself off to sleep there. As Molly sleeps in our bedroom there is also a cushion there for Scarlett. But she seldom uses it. It is only when it is really cold downstairs that Scarlett comes to our room. She would prefer to sleep in front of the heater I am sure, but we don’t give her that option.
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Red Lentil Soup
- 5 rashers streaky bacon, roughly chopped
- 1 onion, peeled and diced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 100 g celery, thinly sliced
- 500 g carrots, peeled and cut into thick slices
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
- 2 x 400g tins whole tomatoes
- 30 mls vegetable stock concentrate / powder
- 5 mls fructose
- 600 mls water, divided
- 170 g red lentils
- 2.5 mls dried oregano
- Basil to garnish
- Place the bacon into a large pot and render the fat over a medium temperature
- Add the onion sauté until soft
- Add the garlic, celery and carrots and stir
- Season generously and then add the tomatoes, stock and fructose
- Pour 200mls water into the pot and bring to the boil
- Reduce the temperature, cover and leave to simmer
- In the meantime place the lentils and the oregano into a mixing bowl Add 150mls water and leave to soak
- When the carrots are soft, blend until chunky using a stick blender
- Add the lentils and the rest of the water, adjust the seasoning and simmer for an hour
- Thinly slice the basil and use to garnish when you serve the soup