This is one of my favorite stew recipes - easy to make, delicious, and freezes well. I got it from The Scramble, a meal-planning service for which I test recipes. I made it for a friend once and he told me that it was so delicious it knocked his socks off!
1 tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
3 carrots, thinly sliced
5-6 stalks celery, thinly sliced
8 oz bacon, cut into thin strips
1 bay leaf
1 cup brown or green lentils, rinsed and drained
4 cups water or chicken/veg broth
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/ tsp pepper (or to taste)
2 tbsp red wine (optional)
In a medium to large stockpot, heat oil over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, celery, bacon, and bay leaf and saute them, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes until the onions are translucent.
Add the lentils and the water/broth and bring it to a low boil. Cover and simmer it, stirring occasionally, for about 1 hour and 20 minutes, until the lentils are tender.
Add the salt, pepper, and wine, and simmer it uncovered for about 5 more minutes. Take out the bay leaf and serve.
(If freezing, let it cool and then put in large freezer bag. Lay flat to freeze.)