Lentils (dried), 7 Oz
Extra virgin olive oil, 8 Tablespoons
Carrot, 1
Celery rib, 1
Onion, 1/2
Garlic, 1 clove
Some tomatoes
Salt and pepper to taste


There is no need to soak the lentil since they cook in shorter time than other pulses. However I suggest you to soak them (if possible) for an hour also to remove the empty ones (i.e. the lentils that will float on the surface of the water).
Lightly brown the garlic with the onion, carrot and celery and add the lentils. Mix altogether for a moment then add boiling water or broth (about 5 cups) and some tomatoes if you like them. Do not add salt at this stage, otherwise the lentils peel will become thick.
Let the lentils cook for an hour, covered, or a little more, depending on the variety and the soaking time (if any). I prefer lentils not “mashed” and I stop to cook them when they are soft on the inside but still maintain their shape.
Pay attention to the water: depending on the variety of lentil they will absorb a lot of water. Keep the heat low and add more boiling water if needed.
When the lentils are done add the salt and cook for some other minutes.
Serve with toasted bread, rice or pasta (traditionally spaghetti broken in little pieces). If you like it, serve with a bit of raw olive oil (actually, with lentils I prefer to not add it).

Thanks to: Croce Delizia