Sort and rinse lentils. Heat olive oil, garlic, onion, pepper, potatoes. Add lentils, water, and spices.
Bring all to a boil, cover and simmer. Stew is cooked when all vegetables are tender and soup thickens.
Add extra water, if you prefer more of a broth than a thick stew. Great on a brisk, snowy day, serve with plenty of crusty warm bread for dipping.