Oozy Red Lentil ‘Risotto’ with Red Wine & Sausages

sausage & red wine lentil 'risotto'-3

Oozy Red Lentil ‘Risotto’ with Red Wine & Sausages

From Stonesoup

I love a good red lentil ‘risotto’. All the oozy goodness with lots more protein and fibre than your boring old rice risotto. And not only that, no need to stir constantly!

Enough for 2
1 onion, peeled & diced
2-3 thick pork sausages, skins removed and meat crumbled into chunks
1 cup red wine
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
200g (7oz) red lentils
2 handfuls grated parmesan + extra to serve

1. Heat a little oil in a medium saucepan and add onion. Cover and cook on a medium low heat, stirring occasionally for 5-10 minutes or until onion is soft.

2. When the onion is soft, increase the heat to medium high, add the sausages and cook for a few minutes until browned.

3. Add the lentils. Stir for a minute.

4. Add red wine and the stock. Stir well then simmer for 15-20 or until the stock is absorbed and the lentils are tender and oozy. If it gets too dry before the lentils are cooked, add a little water.

5. Add cheese and stir until combined. Taste and season. Serve with extra parmesan shaved over.

VARIATIONS
dairy-free / vegan – to be honest I can’t imagine risotto without the butter and cheese. But if you’re willing to give it a go use olive oil to fry the onion and finish with a tablespoon of tomato paste and more olive oil.

vegetarian – mushrooms are lovely instead of the sausages and replace the chicken stock with veggie stock.

use your imagination – pretty much any rice risotto can be adapted to the lentils. Just remember the lentils don’t need quite as much liquid as arborio rice.

different lentils – red lentils are best here because they break down to give that lovely oozy texture. Good old brown lentils will be fine but save your expensive Puy or French-style green lentils for other dishes.

onion-free
– just skip it.

short on time – skip the onion and bring the red wine and stock to the boil in a separate saucepan while the sausages are browning.

Video version of the recipe

waste avoidance strategy

onion - will keep in the pantry for months. Best if in a dark corner in a brown paper bag.

sausages – Will keep for a few days. If packaged in cryovac will keep for 5-6 days. Best to freeze if you need to store for longer OR poach the sausages (simmer gently in water for 15 minutes or until cooked through) then drain and keep in a container in the fridge. Cooked sausages will keep for a week in the fridge.

red wine – keep in the pantry. lasts much longer if hidden from the view of a certain Irishman ;)

stock, lentils – keep in the pantry.

parmesan – keeps for longer in a chunk so only grate when you’re cooking. I wrap in waxed paper or baking paper and then keep in an airtight container or a sealed ziplock bag. I prefer this over just wrapping in cling wrap because the air in the container allows the cheese to breathe and not sweat but the container / plastic bag prevents from drying out in the dry fridge air. Either way will keep for months.

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Tess Newnes February 6, 2014

I didn’t love this one (I made the vegetarian version) but I think maybe it was because I just don’t really like the flavour of red lentils, so I’ll use brown in future recipes that call for them.

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Penny February 5, 2014

I made this last night substituting eggs for the sausage and really enjoyed it. It was very tasty not having any herbs or spices. I cooked it in a deep, lidded frypan and when the lentils were soft I stirred in the parmesan then made some hollows into which I cracked the eggs. I seasoned the eggs then put the lid on the pan and cooked it on low a little longer till the whites were set.

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Edith Vignal February 5, 2014

I agree with Holly above, it tasted really great and I loved it but would not serve it to guests because of the colour. Maybe I should just add spinach and tomato paste to improve the presentation …

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Holly Storm February 4, 2014

I really liked this, like a comfort food, but my husband didn’t like the presentation. He was turned off by the color.

We are at high altitude, so I cooked the lentils with wine and water and added bouillon in the last 5 minutes. (my lentils and rice never get done at high altitude if I add salt in the cooking water) They got pretty soft, but not mushy in 20-25 min. I also forgot the parmesan, but it tasted great anyway. We served it over un-salted rice and it was still plenty salty without the cheese.

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Dyann Karchnak February 2, 2014

What kind of wine should be used? We usually have a cabernet sauvignon but I’ve found it rather strong in some recipes–it end up that all you can taste is the wine.

Thanks!

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Anke Betz November 11, 2013

Hi Jules
I tried this for dinner tonight, and although I followed the instructions, it turned out kinda bad… :( For one, I had to add a whole lot of water (at least 2 cups), and still the lentils were quite al dente when I finally decided to eat it anyway, and secondly, it turned out extremely salty. That may have been because of the stock and the Parmesan, but it was really very, very salty. We added some sour cream to make it better, but still… I was disappointed, because I really like lentils and Parmesan both! Is till have leftovers, which I stored in in the fridge with some more sour cream and water mixed. Maybe it will be better tomorrow…
I also noticed that you mentioned butter in the dairy-free note, but there is actually no butter called for in the recipe… ?
Thanks for your suggestions!
Anke :o}

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jules November 19, 2013

Hi Anke!

I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy this. And thanks for letting me know!

If you are using a commercial stock they can be very salty so next time I’d either use a salt reduced one or use half stock half water.

With the butter, you could either cook the onion in oil or butter which is what I was thinking about when I wrote that note for being dairy-free. Well spotted!

In terms of you not having enough liquid, I’m assuming you had the correct amount of lentils and wine and stock. The only thing I can think of would be that red lentils where you live are different to Australian ones. The ones I used are very small and look like little discs that have been split in half so one surface is more ‘flat’ and the other is rounded.

I’m wondering if your red lentils were what we’d call Italian-style or ‘Castelluccio’ red lentils. These are slightly larger and rounded on both sides. They’re similar to French ‘Puy’ lentils in that they hold their shape much longer than the smaller red lentils I used. And would need more liquid and a longer cooking time.

Do you think that explains it?
Jx

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