1 1/4 cups French green lentils
12 oz crushed tomatoes — I like Pomi brand finely chopped tomatoes (1 1/2 cups), see notes above
2 large onions, chopped (about a quart of diced onions)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
½ cup white balsamic vinegar, see notes above
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
½ teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped, or if you are feeling lazy, a few whole springs
3 carrots, peeled and diced (1 to 2 cups)
3 celery stalks, diced (1 to 2 cups)
crushed red pepper flakes to taste
freshly cracked black pepper to taste
Throw all ingredients together in a pot. Add 1½ qts. plus one cup of water (seven cups total) and bring to a boil. Simmer for one hour uncovered. Taste, adjust with more salt — I always add another teaspoon of kosher salt, sometimes more. Extract the bay leaf and thyme sprigs, if using, and discard. Serve with bread and lots of fresh cracked pepper.
On day two, much of the liquid will have been absorbed buy the lentils and veggies. Just add a little more water to the pot as you reheat and adjust the seasoning as necessary — a pinch more salt usually does the trick.
Recipe source: alexandracooks.com