Scottish lentil soup
350 grams red split lentils
3 tablespoons sunflower oil
Ham bone (with good amount of meat on it) or 5-6 good rashers of smoked bacon
2 medium onions, finely diced
3 carrots, finely diced
half a small swede turnip, diced
3 sticks celery, finely diced
1 bay leaf
3 sprigs parsley
1.5 litres water
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Wash the lentils in a sieve under cold running water. Tip into a bowl and cover with warm water. Soak for 30 minutes.
Heat the oil in a large pan, mix in the vegetables and fry until soft. Drain the lentils and mix into the vegetables with the herbs and water. Add ham bone.. Bring to the boil then simmer gently until the lentils and vegetables are very soft - about 45 minutes. Remove any scum.
Remove the herbs (and the ham bone, stripping meat from the bone and adding to the soup) and purée in a liquidiser. Strain, adjust the seasoning and reheat before serving.
Serve with lots of good granary bread and butter.