Le Puy Green Lentils are often hailed has the world’s finest because of their robust and earthy flavor. They are exceptionally small and keep their shape and color when cooked. This elegant and nutritious soup made with Green Lentils from Le Puy is perfect for a chilly fall or winter evening meal. The bacon adds a smoky element that plays nicely with the earthy lentils, bitter kale, and the sweetness of the fennel, onions, carrots, and tomatoes. We added a touch of medium grain prepared mustard for added depth.
Le Puy Green Lentil Soup with Bacon, Fennel, and Baby Kale can be garnished with shaved Gruyere and served with a medium bodied red wine or crisp dry white wine and crusty French bread.
- 3 slices thick cut bacon, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 small bulb fennel, finely chopped
- 2 medium carrots, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon medium grain prepared mustard
- 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
- 6 cups reduced sodium vegetable stock
- 1 cup Le Puy Green Lentils (AOC) by Sabarot
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 cups baby kale (may substitute mature chopped kale or spinach)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Gruyere cheese
In a large pot over medium heat, fry bacon until fat is rendered and bacon is crisp. Remove bacon from pot and set aside.
Add olive oil to rendered bacon fat and heat. Add onions, fennel, and carrots, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and stir occasionally for 1-2 more minutes.
Return bacon to the pot and add mustard, diced tomatoes with their juices, vegetable stock, lentils, thyme, bay leaves, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to simmer for 40-45 minutes. Stir once or twice.
Remove bay leaves and thyme sprigs from pot, then stir in kale and taste for salt and pepper. Serve hot, topped with freshly shaved Gruyere and a slice of crusty French bread. Serves 6-8.