In Italy, sausages are traditionally eaten with lentils on New Year’s Day and so it seems to me that if it can be elevated to a celebratory meal by one of the great food cultures of the world, surely you can eat them in a soup during the week and consider yourself well satisfied.
This is quick to make and it tastes even better the next day. It’s fantastically portable for a work lunch, either in a thermos or to be warmed up in a microwave. It’s also hearty and sustains you throughout the mid afternoon slump.
Oh and it’s as cheap as chips. Thought you might like to know.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 red onion, halved, thinly sliced
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 150g mushrooms, sliced thinly
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced finely
- 1L (4 cups) water
- 1 x 700g bottle tomato passata
- 1 cup dried green or Puy lentils
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1½ tsp dried oregano or 1 tbsp fresh oregano leaves, finely chopped
- 4 thin sausages, cut into 1cm-thick slices
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tsp smokey paprika
- 1 tsp cumin
- ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- crusty bread, to serve
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until onion softens. Add carrot and mushrooms, and stir well, coating the vegetables and sauté for a further 3 minutes until the carrot starts to soften.
Add the water, tomato passata, lentils, vinegar and oregano. Cover. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes.
Uncover and add the sausage, paprika, cumin and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for a further 10 minutes or until sausage is cooked and lentils are tender. Stir in half the parsley.
Ladle among serving bowls. Top with remaining parsley. Serve with bread.
$9.50 for four people