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Ok, I know this is a very simple dish and most of you could probably cook like this blindfolded, but because I made it up all by myself and this is part of my “re-discovery” in the kitchen, I’m going to post it anyway!  I threw this together after we’d been out for a short but very very cold ride through the local hills around St Chinian. It was just the thing we needed and Rod liked it very much, so here goes.

Our cold ride today - Rod next to the frozen stream up in the hills. It was only slightly more frozen than us.

Hearty Vegetable & Lentil Soup with Smoked Sausage

Ingredients (serves 4):

1 ½ Onion

4-5 cloves Garlic

4 small Carrots

3 small sticks Celery

1-2 Leeks

8-10 Small potatoes (baby or new potatoes)

Thyme, rosemary, coriander seeds, paprika,

2 chicken stock cubes, or vegetable stock

1 cup Dried lentils (brown or red)

4 thick smoked pork sausages (I used Languedoc sausages)

Olive oil

Salt & pepper to taste.

The ingredients

Method:

Heat some olive oil in a large heavy-based pot, sauté the onion & garlic.

Dice all the vegetables (I scrubbed the potatoes & carrots instead of peeling) and add to the pot, stir to coat with the oil & cook for a few minutes to soften. Add the herbs & spices & stir.

Vegetables & herbs softening in the pan

Dissolve the chicken stock cubes in hot water & add to the pot, add the lentils, stir & when the pot is boiling, reduce heat, cover & simmer.

In a non-stick frying pan, brown the sausages on all sides. Add to the soup pot and check the liquid – add more water if needed.

Brown the smoked sausages...

Simmer for at least 1 hour, checking the consistency & adding more water if needed.

Bon apetit mes amis!

Serve with warm crusty bread and enjoy!

Bon apetit, a bientot, Paige xo

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