Hearty Lentil Soup

            Hearty Lentil Soup

2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 T. butter
6 cups water
1 can (28 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained
¾ cup dry lentils, rinsed
¾ cup medium pearl barley
2 T. chicken bouillon
½ tsp. dried oregano
½ tsp dried rosemary, crushed
¼ tsp. pepper
1 cup thinly sliced carrots
1 cup shredded Swiss cheese, optional

In a Dutch oven or soup kettle, sauté the celery, onion and garlic in butter until tender.  Add water, tomatoes, lentils, barley, bouillon, oregano, rosemary and pepper; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 40 minutes or until lentils and barely are almost tender.
Add carrots; simmer for 15 minutes or until carrots, lentils and barley are tender.  Sprinkle each serving with cheese if desired.  Yield:  8-10 servings. 

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