Sort and rinse lentils, set aside they do not need to soak like other dried beans.
In stockpot lightly saute or "sweat" the carrots, onions, and celery in olive or canola oil. Add garlic; pour in about 8 cups of water with the boullion cubes (or 8 cups chicken broth or stock; add more or less boullion cubes for preferred chicken flavor).
Add lentils, and seasonings bring to a boil, and then simmer for about 30 minutes until lentils and vegetables are tender.
Remove bay leaf, season with additional salt and pepper if desired. (I don't add any additional salt, as the boullion or stock has enough of it's own. )
Note: My husband who told me he was going to hate this soup, really liked it in fact and ate 3 bowlfuls the first time I made it. The next time I make it I am going to fry up a little turkey bacon and add to it, just to make it a little smoky. Or I suppose you could add a little ground cumin if you like the smoky flavor.
There are 207 calories in 1 serving of Lentil Soup.