Provençal lentils

Preparation info
  • Serves


    • Difficulty


Appears in
Winter Food

By Jill Norman

Published 2005

  • About

Lentils are available in several varieties; the ones with the best flavour and texture come from Puy in France and from Castelluccio in Italy. Decidedly comfort food, they respond well to a variety of flavourings: herbs, spices, cream or yogurt, as well as the traditional garlic and tomato of Provence.


  • 250 g Puy lentils
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion


Pick over the lentils and wash them. Heat the olive oil in a large pan and sauté the onion until softened and translucent but not browned. Add the garlic, stir it in the oil for a moment, then put in the lentils, bay leaf, peppercorns and tomato purée. Pour in 750ml of water, stir to mix in the tomato purée and cook, partly covered, until the lentils are tender; this should take 20–25 mi