ham bone, already cooked
1½ c. dry lentils
3 T. butter
½ c. chopped celery
½ c. chopped leek (optional)
½ c. chopped onion or ¾ c. if no leek
1 clove garlic, crushed
1¾ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. thyme
¼ tsp. coarsely ground black pepper
1 c. sliced frankfurters
Trim excess fat from ham bone.
In a large pot, cook lentils and ham bone in 5 c. cold water.
Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered 1hr. before adding vegetables.
Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, saute celery, leek, onion and garlic in 3 T. butter.
Add sautéed vegetables, salt, thyme and pepper to lentils along with another 2 c. water.
Simmer, covered until lentils are tender - about 30 min. more.
Remove ham bone from soup and cool. Then cut ham from bone and dice.
With potato masher, mash vegetables right in kettle, leaving some lentils whole.
Add diced ham and frankfurters to soup and simmer, covered 30 min. longer.
For a very thick soup, simmer uncovered.
Serve topped with sour cream and parsley.