Leaning decidedly French, this power-packed Lentil Sausage & Bacon Casserole is a big pot full of love on a cold night! Pair with an unoaked, buttery Chardonnay and Dijon mustard for the full, French effect.
- 7 – 10 slices of thick cut, double smoked bacon
- 5 cups cold water
- 2 bay leaves
- 10 – 15 whole peppercorns
- 4 sprigs of fresh thyme (1 teaspoon dried)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 sausages
- 1 large onion, diced (2 cups)
- 4 or 5 carrots, diced (2 cups)
- 1 1/2 cups dried green lentils, rinsed
- 1 cup white wine
- 4 – 6 cloves of garlic, chopped fine (divided)
- 2 cups coarse breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped fine (divided)
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- Pre-heat oven to 375°F
- Bacon Stock: Don’t separate your bacon, just count out ten slices and cut bacon rashers in thirds, then cover with about 5 cups of COLD water in a medium sized pot. Add peppercorns, bay leaves, and two sprigs of thyme. Bring to a boil then reduce to simmer for about 7 minutes. Skim foamy scum from the top with a slotted spoon, then drain, reserving liquid. When cooled slightly, cut bacon in 1/2-inch pieces and reserve. Discard used seasonings and any fat skimmed from the top.
- As your bacon stock is cooking, sear sausages, in large oven-friendly casserole pot or Dutch oven over medium heat with a good slick of olive oil. Remove when coloured and reserve. Sweat onions and carrots in same pot, until transparent. Add rinsed lentils and combine. Add white wine, to fully deglaze pan, should there be any remaining brown bits after cooking onions & carrots. Measure 41/2 cups of now cool bacon stock and add to pot along with the chopped cooked bacon, the remaining thyme, half the chopped garlic and parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir and bring to a boil over medium high heat then place the whole works in a 375° oven, covered, for 15 minutes.
- While lentils, sausages, and bacon cook (and become delicious!), toss breadcrumbs, remaining garlic, parsley and melted butter in a bowl to coat.
- At the 15-minute mark, remove casserole. Top evenly with garlic breadcrumbs and return to the oven, uncovered, for about 10 minutes until breadcrumb topping is golden brown and crisp. Remove from oven, allow to stand for about 5 minutes and serve.
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 Minutes
- Category: One Pot Meals
- Method: Braising
- Cuisine: French
Keywords: Lentil Sausage Bacon Casserole, Lentil Casserole