1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large finely chopped onion
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 litre vegetable stock (I use Moredough or Stock Merchant vegetable stock)
2/3 cup dried brown lentils – wash thoroughly before using
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
170g tomato paste
800g canned italian tomatoes, chopped (also use the liquid)
1/2 cup chopped italian parsley
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon (or 1 teaspoon dried)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill (or 1 teaspoon dried)
salt and pepper to taste
Gently fry onion and garlic in the oil for about 5 minutes. Add the stock, lentils, celery, carrot and bay leaf. Bring to boil, then simmer covered for about an hour.
Mix the tomato paste and chopped herbs together.
Remove bay leaf from soup, then add the canned tomatoes and the tomato paste/herb mixture. Simmer another 10 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve topped with some chopped herbs.