Pressure Cooker Lentil and Bacon Soup recipe, inspired by Laurie Colwin’s “Home Cooking: A Writer in the Kitchen”. A quick, hearty soup for a cold day.
- 4 ounces diced bacon
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1/2 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt or 1/4 teaspoon table salt
- 1 pound brown lentils, rinsed (2 1/4 cups)
- 4 cups water
- 15 ounce can diced tomatoes
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Brown the bacon: Spread the bacon out in the bottom of the pressure cooker pot, then put it over medium-low heat (or, in an electric PC, use Sauté mode). Cook the bacon, stirring often, until the bacon is well browned, about 5 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon, leaving as much fat behind as possible. Set the bacon on a plate lined with paper towels to drain.
- Sauté the aromatics in the bacon fat: Add the onion and garlic to the pressure cooker pot, and then sprinkle with the 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Saute until the onion softens, about five minutes. Add the lentils to the pot, pour in the water and then stir in the tomatoes and the reserved bacon.
- Pressure cook the lentils: Lock the lid on the pressure cooker, bring the cooker to high pressure, and pressure cook for 12 minutes in a stovetop cooker, and 15 minutes in an electric pressure cooker. (On the Instant Pot, use the Manual setting, and set the cook time for 15 minutes.) When the cooking time is over, remove the pot from the heat and let the pressure come down naturally, about 15 minutes. Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to avoid any hot steam.
- Thicken, season, and serve: Scoop 2 cups of lentils and cooking liquid out of the cooker and puree them. (I put them in a quart measuring cup and use my stick blender.) Pour the pureed lentils back into the pot. Taste the soup, then add salt and pepper until you just taste the salt on the tip of your tongue. (I usually add another two teaspoons of kosher salt to the pot.) Serve.