Holiday Recipe, Cotechino & Lentils
Lenticchie col Cotechino / Lentils with Cotechino Sausage
Adapted from Carol Fields’ Celebrating Italy. Serves 6
A traditional Italian New Year’s eve meal that brings good luck (the sausage is sliced into the shape of coins) for the coming year. In Emilia-Romagna the sausage is encased in a pig’s foot, zampone.
1 lb. Pastaworks’ cotechino sausage
1 lb. lentils
3 cups broth or water
1/4 cup olive oil
1 small onion finely chopped
1 rib celery, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
8 fresh sage leaves, chopped
3 tb. tomato paste diluted in a little water
salt and pepper to taste
Clean the lentils well by soaking them briefly and changing the water at least once. Put them in cold water, bring to a boil, and cook until not quite done, 40-60 mins. or until done to your taste.
Pierce the sausages in several places with a fork. Boil very slowly in broth over low heat for about 10-15 minutes, skimming off the fat if necessary. When cooked, remove from the broth and let it cool briefly.
Warm the olive oil and sauté the onion,, carrot, celery, garlic and sage leaves until the onion is transparent and the vegetables limp. Be careful not to burn the garlic, Drain the lentils, saving a bit of their water, add the sautéed vegetables, salt and pepper, and mix in the tomato sauce with a wooden spoon. Bathe with about three ladleful’s of broth from the cotechino. Slice the cotechino into quarter-inch rounds and serve next to or over the cooked lentils.
Serve with a green salad and Lambrusco or a Sangiovese based red from Zerbina or Tre Monti.