For many of you, this is the season of pumpkin spice. For me, it’s the season of soup.
My favorite thing about soup is that you can pack it full of healthy stuff. It’s essentially a liquid salad that you can make in bulk, preserve in a freezer, and easily carry with you to work. (Pro tip: mason jars are the best way to carry your soup to work with you, if you are so inclined.)
This soup relies on the flavor of smoked ham hocks. I have no idea what part of the pig the “hocks” come from, but I know that they are super inexpensive, packed with flavor, and the perfect base for soups and stews.
Hearty Healthy Lentil Soup
1 smoked ham hock
2 tbs Olive oil
1 large onion
4 cloves garlic, sliced thin
2 tbs tomato paste
1 cup dry white or red wine, whatever you like best
1 1/2 cups lentils (your choice, I used mixed lentils)
3 large carrots, peeled and sliced
3 celery stalks, sliced
2 32 oz boxes of chicken stock
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper
In a large pot, heat chicken stock, bay leaf, and ham hocks until boiling. Cover the pot with a lid and turn down the heat till just simmering. Summer for 1 hour or until ham hock is tender.
Remove ham hocks.
In another large pot, heat olive oil on medium high until hot. Add onions, carrots, and celery with a sprinkle of salt and pepper and cook until onions begin to turn translucent. Add garlic and cook for another minute until fragrant. Add tomato paste and cook until paste changes color to orange-red. Add wine and carefully scrape any crispy or caramelized bits off of he bottom of the pot. Add the stock from the other pot, along with the lentils. Heat till boiling, then turn down the heat and cover. Simmer for 30 minutes.
While soup is simmering, pull meat off of ham hocks, discarding fat and bones.
When lentils are tender, the soup is done. Add meat back into the soup, discard the bay leaf, and serve.
As always, here is a pin so you can save this recipe for later 😉