With New Orleans being one of my favorite cities in the world, it's not surprising that I chose a sausage that pays homage to the wonderful food- and music-filled city. Andouille sausage, typically a spiced pork sausage, is often found in Cajun cooking. In this recipe, it's served atop green lentils cooked in chicken broth and finished off with some parsley, fresh squeezed lemon juice, and a drizzle of high-quality extra-virgin olive oil.
A few housekeeping notes: Make sure to prick the sausage well, either with a fork or a toothpick, otherwise it will bubble and not look as pretty. Since I like things on the hotter side, I added a chile pepper to the dish, but you can easily leave that out and add some dried red chile flakes if you want to season and taste for heat level as you go. Or, leave it out entirely! Also, if pork sausage isn't your thing, then feel free to use another cooked sausage like chicken or turkey instead.
Note: Use store-bought pre-cooked andouille sausage for this recipe.
- 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 whole andouille sausages, pricked all over with a toothpick or cake tester (about 1 pound, see note)
- 1 large carrot, peeled and diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 1 celery stalk, finely diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 medium onion, finely diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 1 serrano or jalapeño pepper, minced (optional, about 2 tablespoons)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup dried green lentils
- 3 1/2 cups low-sodium homemade or canned chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice from 1 lemon
- Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling (optional)
- ½ cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
Heat 1⁄2 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the sausages and cook until browned on all sides, about 4 minutes. Set aside.
Add the remaining olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add the carrots, celery, onion, chili pepper, and a generous pinch of salt. Stir until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the lentils and the broth, stirring to combine. Lower the heat to bring to a simmer, then partially cover, and allow to cook until lentils are beginning to softe, about 15 minutes. uncover, add sausages, and continue to cook, stirring lentils and flipping sausages occasionally until fully cooked.
Stir in the lemon juice and parsley and season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle lentils into four serving bowls and top each with a sausage (slice sausage first if desired). Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and serve immediately.