- Ham hock
- 1 small package lentils
- 1 small can tomato paste
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 4 About 4 celery stalks, chopped
- Potatoes, diced (I only use a couple of medium size potatoes)
- Carrots, sliced
- Salt to taste
Put ham hock in Dutch oven. Add rinsed lentils, onion, celery and tomato paste. Add water to about ½ inch from top of pan. Mix well, and bring to boil. Once it boils, lower heat and simmer for about 3 hours. Stir it about every half hour so it doesn’t stick. Add potatoes and carrots. Also add salt if needed (sometimes there is enough from the ham; it should almost be too salty as the potatoes will take the salt out). Take the ham out and cut it into bite-sized pieces. Bring to boil again and simmer for another hour. Add more water when it needs it. It might need a little when you add the potatoes and carrots, but only about a cup; don’t add any after that.
I make sure I put the leafy parts of the celery in the soup when I first start it, then remove them after about an hour. The soup actually doesn’t have to cook so long (only about 2 hours), but I like it when the lentils open and make the soup thicker.