I have been trying to convince myself that when Hugo helped himself to a baguette off the kitchen counter of the friends we were visiting last Sunday, it was his contribution towards dinner; a welcome accompaniment for the soup I’d made. And then I pulled my head out of the sand, removed my rose-tinted glasses and woke up and smelt the coffee: with no end of previous convictions to his name (including the time he stole no fewer than eight baguettes from a friend’s car), he’s nothing but a pathologically incorrigible food pilferer and I couldn’t be more embarrassed.
Ingredients (serves 6-8)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 large onion, sliced
2 leeks, washed and sliced
3 cloves of garlic
2 red peppers
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 teaspoons’ freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon paprika (or piment d’Espelette)
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
250g coral lentils
1.5 litres organic vegetable stock
Gently fry the onions, leeks and garlic in olive oil for a few minutes. Once golden brown, add the peppers, carrots, ginger and seasoning. Then add the lentils and pour the stock over the top. Simmer for 30 minutes and then purée. Serve with crispy baguette, if at all possible free of doggie dribble.