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French Lentil Soup *

French Lentil SoupThis lentil soup is a wonderful comfort-food meal that is enjoyable anytime of the year. It is great as is, or spice it up and add some cooked, seasoned, ground turkey for that extra touch.

Try this soup with Cheesy Garlic-Herb Drop Biscuits or Texas Skillet Bread.

In a 4-quart saucepan over med-high heat, melt coconut oil. When hot, but not smoking, add the onion and cook until golden brown around the edges and beginning to caramelize, about 8 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add celery, bell pepper, and garlic; cook for about 5 minutes more.

Add the chicken broth, tomatoes with juice, lentils, and oregano. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 45 minutes, until lentils are tender.

Insert a stick blender into the pan and blend in short bursts, 2-3 times, not much more; the goal is to puree a little of the soup, but leave some of the lentils whole. This gives the soup extra texture.

If the soup is too thick, add a little extra water 1/4 cup at a time until the soup reaches the desired consistency. Add the balsamic vinegar. Season to taste with cayenne, if desired, and salt and pepper.

Garnish each serving with a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of chopped parsley, cilantro, or celery leaves. The soup is also great with crumbled goat cheese on top.

Serves 8.

*Sugar-Free / Grain-Free