I love lentils….they have endless delicious possibilities & are a great protein base for tons of different add-in’s & spices. I like ’em cold and mixed in a salad, hot and spicy and mushy with super flavorful Indian flavors, or as in this recipe, more hearty & stewed, mixed with smoky sausage, healthy collard greens and roasted bell peppers.
For this preparation I like to use black beluga lentils (pictured) or French green lentils. They really retain their shape and have a firmer texture when cooked than some of the other varieties.
I also recommend sprinkling on some Aleppo pepper when serving. If you are unfamiliar with this spice, it’s high time you picked yourself up some :). It comes from a Turkish chili that has a moderate amount of spice, but also kind of an underlying raisin-y sweetness with a hint of salty tangy-ness (wow, that’s a lot of adjectives!). I sprinkle it on pretty much everything – eggs, pasta, pizza, any protein…click HERE to order it on Amazon…you will love.
1 t. olive oil
1/2 large onion – chopped
1 large carrot – diced
1 large celery – diced
2 medium cloves garlic – minced
15-oz can fire-roasted tomatoes – drained
2 1/2 c. chicken or veggie broth
1 c. black beluga lentils, or French green lentils
1 t. salt
fresh ground pepper
1 t. smoked mild paprika
1 t. olive oil
12 ounces pre-cooked smoked sausages
1 bunch collard greens
1/2 c. chopped roasted bell peppers
crumbled sheep’s milk Feta
In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the onion, carrot & celery and cook 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more.
Add the tomatoes and broth and bring to a boil. Add the lentils & return to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer and cook 15-20 minutes, or until lentils are tender.
While the lentils are simmering, you can prepare your sausage & collard greens. Pull the collard leaves off of their though stems and roughly chop.
Heat olive oil in a heavy bottomed skillet over medium high heat. Add sausages and cook, turning often until plump, warmed through, and slightly charred – about 5 minutes. Remove from pan. While pan is still hot, add the collard greens and sauté 4-5 minutes, stirring often, until they appear bright green and wilted. Season with salt & pepper.
Slice sausages into bite sized pieces. Add sausages, collard greens and roasted bell peppers to the lentils and stir to combine. Add more salt & pepper if necessary. Serve in bowls topped with crumbled Feta and finish with a sprinkle with Aleppo pepper.