Extra virgin olive oil
1/2 large yellow onion
3 cloves garlic
3 stalks celery
4 cups French lentils
1 cube vegetable bouillon
1 cup dry white wine
2 bay leaves
Hot pepper flakes
Add about two Tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil to a large soup pot and turn heat to medium-low. Chop the onion and add it to the pot, stirring as needed and making sure the heat is low enough so the onions cook slowly and begin to turn translucent. Chop the garlic and add it to the pot with the onions. Cut the carrots, celery, potato, and zucchini and add them to the pot as they are chopped, stirring occasionally.
Rinse the lentils and add them to the pot along with a bouillon cube and one cup of dry white wine. Stir and add herbs to taste: plenty of thyme, rosemary, 2 bay leaves, and enough hot pepper flakes to give the soup warmth.
Turn the heat to low and let it simmer for 1-2 hours.
Towards the end of the cooking process, add some tomato paste and taste again for salt. Adjust seasonings as needed.
Serve with a drizzle of really good olive oil. Can also be served with Parmesan on top or a small amount of balsamic vinegar, both of which change the flavor fairly markedly.