Lentil Soup

Preparation info
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By Claudia Roden

Published 1986

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There are several versions of this favourite winter soup. Red, yellow, green or brown lentils can be used, but the tiny red lentils widely available here are best as they disintegrate very quickly.

The soup can be made with water, but a meat or bone stock will make it considerably richer and tastier.


  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 stalk celer


Soften the onion, celery and carrot, if used, in oil in a large saucepan. Add the lentils, water or stock and the marrow bone which, if cracked, will release even more marrow; bring to the boil and skim if necessary. Simmer gently, covered, until the lentils are very soft. This will take 20 to 45 minutes – the cooking time varying according to the quality and age of the lentils.

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