The inspiration for chef Tom Fundaro's garlicky lentil soup is the traditional cotechino pork sausage from the Italian region of Emilia-Romagna, where it's cooked slowly until moist and almost sticky, then served over creamy lentils. Fundaro's recipe skews pan-European, with French lentils, Manchego cheese and any really good garlic sausage.
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1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
3/4 pound garlic sausage, cut into 1-inch cubes
3 large carrots, cut into 1/2-inch dice
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1 medium fennel bulb, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 bay leaf
1 cup dry white wine
3 cups French green lentils (1 pound plus 5 ounces)
2 quarts chicken broth
1 quart water
1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 1/2 ounces Manchego cheese, shredded (3/4 cup)
How to Make It
Heat the 1/4 cup of olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the sausage and cook over moderately low heat until it starts to brown, about 7 minutes. Add the carrots, garlic, onion, fennel and bay leaf and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the wine and boil over moderately high heat until the pan is almost dry, about 5 minutes. Stir in the lentils, broth and water and bring to a boil. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender, 1 hour. Discard the bay leaf.
Stir the rosemary into the soup and season with salt and pepper. Ladle into bowls. Sprinkle with cheese, then drizzle with olive oil and serve.
A Paso Robles Merlot matches well with this garlicky, robust soup.
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