Here's the actual recipe so you can view it and see pics on the same page:
1 1/2 cups lentils rinsed thoroughly
4 links (1 lb.) Italian sausage (mild is used in the restaurant and I prefer ground sausage- I'm weird about eating casing)
1 TBSP butter
1 TBSP Olive Oil (Extra Virgin)
1/2 cup diced white onion (I prefer Maui or Walla Walla Sweet)
1/2 cup diced carrot
1/4 cup diced leek, white part only
1/4 cup diced celery
1 TBSP salt
1/2 TSP. ground white pepper (or black)
1 QT. Chicken Stock (I use water and granules)
2 TBSP Dijon Mustard (I'm not a mustard fan generally but this is part of the special flavor of the soup, do not omit it!)
1 TBSP Red Wine Vinegar
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup fresh spinach coarsely chopped, divided use
Fresh grated Parmesan Cheese to Taste
In a heavy bottom 2 QT saucepot, add the butter and olive oil. Heat to melt the
butter, then add the sausage links and brown evenly on all sides. (While the
sausage is cooking, reduce the heat so the butter does not burn) Cook the
sausage for about 5 minutes, or until the center is done. Then remove from the
pan and allow to cool. (they will be sliced and added back later) Do not drain the pain, the fat and juices will be a part of the recipe.
After removing the sausage, add the onions, carrots, celery, leeks and seasonings
to the pot. Cook over medium-high heat until the vegetables are tender (about 2
minutes). I found that it took more like 5 minutes. Then add the lentils and chicken
stock, stir briefly and bring to a boil. Stir occasionally to prevent the lentils from
sticking to the bottom of the pan. When the soup starts to boil, reduce the heat to
low, and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 45 minutes. While the soup is
simmering, slice the sausage.
When the lentils are tender add the cream, sausage, mustard, vinegar and 3/4 cup
of the spinach. Stir to mix all the ingredients well. Return the soup to a boil, then
reduce heat and simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
Serve in warm bowls garnished with fresh spinach and parmesan cheese.
Butter and olive oil
Ground sausage cooking in butter and olive oil
All the veggies diced and ready
Garbage bowl to save time running to the trash
This kind of spoon/ladle is great for getting the sausage out of the pan without removing the fat/oil/butter
Sausage set aside to cool
Veggies added to the pan
If only you could smell this!
The soup simmers for 45 minutes while the lentils cook
Sausage ready for the soup (cut up in bite size pieces)
Finished soup (this is a pic from when I made it with link sausage). It's so beautiful, hearty, and satisfying!