Cookbook Challenge: Week 2 — “The Best of Gourmet” – Lentils and Sausage
For this week’s challenge (part of the 52 week cookbook challenge you can read about here) I’m doing recipe featuring sausage, lentils and a red wine vinaigrette from an old but fun cookbook from Gourmet called: The Best of Gourmet: Sixty-five Years, Sixty-five Favorite Recipes. Unfortunately I can’t link the cookbook it for you, it appears to not be available on Amazon anymore. But don’t worry, I’ll post the full recipe below. I used to subscribe to Gourmet magazine until they stopped printing several years ago. I picked this book up a long time ago at a Home Goods type store, because it printed the favorite recipe of the year from the Magazine’s printing from the 1940’s to the 2000’s. There are so many interesting recipes — and lots of classics like Chicken a la King, Duck L’orange, and others you’ve probably seen on an episode of Mad Men.
So, why did I pick this week’s recipe? Well, three main reasons. 1) I had nearly all the ingredients on hand, and 2) I have a love for lentils paired with red wine vinegar and 3) my kids will pretty much eat anything that has sausage in it. So let’s take a look at what you need, and then how it tastes! (I modified the recipe a bit after making this!)
1-2 packages of Kielbasa sliced fairly thin on an angle (depending on how much your family eats) – I personally like the Turkey Naturals with no nitrates — but you can go for whatever you like
1 1/2 cups of green or brown lentils that have been picked through and rinsed (original recipe called for two cups but I found it was way too much and the ratio was off with the vinaigrette so I lowered by a half cup)
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1 small onion diced
1-2 garlic clove minced (or two frozen minced ones from Trader Joes – my fav quick hack!)
1 teaspoon dried thyme
olive oil for sautéing veggies
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1-2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
Put 5-6 quarts of water in pan and the bay leaf, and bring lentils to a boil and then turn to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Check tenderness after 15 minutes and add some salt to taste — it will need another 5-10 minutes to simmer until tender. You want the lentils to be tender but still be intact. Once finished — drain the lentils.
While lentils are simmering, saute veggies, onion, garlic, carrots and celery over medium heat – you don’t want them to brown you just want them to get tender add the dried thyme. When veggies are tender put them aside in a bowl and clean the sauté pan out which you will use for the sausage.
Make the vinaigrette – Pour the red wine vinegar and mustard into a container and whisk the oil in. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
Brown sliced sausage in olive oil.
Pour the drained lentils, and the veggies into the pan with the sausage. Next — carefully pour HALF of the vinaigrette into the mixture and toss gently.
Taste it — it should have that tang of the red wine vinegar but not be overpowering. If needed add more of the vinaigrette. This is more of a personal taste preference.
Add salt to taste if needed. Then serve.
My kids loved having extra mustard on the side and the ate this dinner right up. Everyone gave it a thumbs up. (well, my kids gave a 3 quarter’s thumbs up).