It’s one of those foods you just can’t see yourself craving. Really…what seems exciting about lentils? Definitely not their brownish-green color. My husband especially doesn’t seem like he’d be a fan of lentils, and yet he is. He even suprised himself!
In fact this recipe came about as a request of hubby….he wanted me to try to recreate a soup he had back in law school. So almost 4 years ago I set about trying to figure out the flavor combo he was looking for. I was very excited that I nailed on the first try.
I found the original recipe, Smoked Sausage and Lentil Gumbo at Recipe Source, and after many, many tweaks I consider it my own.
It’s very versatile which allows you to suit it to your tastes. I made it just last night so with any luck I can get a picture up to go with this post.
This sausage lentil stew is the kind of soup that just minutes into cooking has your whole house smelling wonderful. It’s the kind of soup that welcomes hubby home after a hard days work, and has him glad to get out of the dreary rainy day. This was the kind of day it was here yesterday when hubby got home from work. And though I had to be at work, I was glad that my efforts in the kitchen were there to greet him with a kiss.
Sausage Lentil Stew
2 large sausage links, casings removed*
1 3/4 cups dried lentils
1/4 sweet vidalia onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 quarts filtered water
4 tsp chicken base (from Costco), similar to buillion
1 T worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp pepper
*I purchased the sausage from the butcher area at Whole Foods. They have great quality meat, and I purchased 1 chorizo chicken sausage link and one plain or mild chicken sausage link. You can use polish sausage sliced and quartered or any type of sausage you wish.
I sauteed up the sausage the day before, so it was ready to go in the fridge.
In a soup pot, saute the diced onion. After the onion is ready add in garlic, cumin & pepper. Stir around till fragrant. Add in water, chicken base or bullion (or eliminate water if using all chicken stock). Add in rinsed and picked through lentils. Add in sausage and worcestershire sauce. Heat to boiling and then reduce heat to simmer and cover with a lid. Lentils will be ready in 40 minutes, but the longer you simmer the soup the better the flavors meld together.
The original recipe also included some celery and carrots finely chopped and sauteed with the onion. You can do this…it adds great flavor. I just never seem to have them on hand.
As with most soups…the taste is even better the next day. Depending on how spicy you like your soups…add a dash of cayenne pepper. I usually do, but didnt’ last night since we were using a chorizo sausage link. Hubby and I like it spicy, but we try not to overdue it for the kid’s sake. Especially since the toddler was having some.
Hope you try it out….especially if you’ve never had lentils before. You’ll be surprised at how tasty and hearty this soup is!!