A Casserole! Oh yeah, we’re doing it.
Well, actually, Bon Appetit mag did it, circa October 2012 edition, and we’re just simplifying the recipe a tad and reducing the cooking time by ten. Can you deal with that? Yea? Thought so.
Usually when I think casserole I think canned soup, gobs of cheese, or hamburger helper (which I always thought looked good.) This one is different – and certainly not lacking.
Let’s all give a round of applause to sausage for taking this throw together meal to the next level. You know, that level that makes you actually want to make a recipe again, or a variation with another kind of sausage, bacon, or pancetta, oooh!
Other than tasting delicious, it’s pretty freakin healthy. Full of veggies, chicken sausage, a sprouted, whole grain crunchy topping and the main attraction: lentils, this baby is fiberful, protein packed and nutrient rich.
According to whfoods.com, lentils are a great source of folate and magnesium; great for pregnant women, adolescents and kids. They’re also packed with fiber, which not only helps lower cholesterol, but aids in digestion and stabilizing blood sugar levels; perfect for diabetics, baby boomers, and folks looking to get things flowing more regularly. Oh yeah, lentils are lighter on calories too (awesome!) and yet quite filling (double awesome!), a cup is only about 230 calories and can seriously survive you all afternoon and the drive home.
Yet another reason to make this dish, it gets better as it sits in the fridge as leftovers for the next two days. I always make enough for 6 or 8 even though there’s only two of us, haven’t seemed to figure out that divide by 4 method. Whatever. We get to enjoy leftovers and I don’t have to cook everyday so that’s a plus. I’m sure you could freeze this, thaw it in the fridge and it would be even better than before.
It’s also sorta kinda in a weird way reminiscent of Thanksgiving – think stuffing.
So that’s about 20 reasons to get your casserole on, get to it!
Random cat pic:
Here’s those milk bottles I was talking about. Lexy likes rubbing her chin all over them, perhaps marking her scent. Or she’s looking for milk, such a smarty.
Andouille Sausage Lentil Casserole
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Ingredients (6-8 servings)
- 2 c. green lentils, rinsed
- 3 c. filtered water
- 3 c. chicken stock
- 1 medium onion studded with 3 cloves
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 2-4 (~6 oz.) chicken andouille sausage, sliced on the diagonal
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 3 small carrots, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1-2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- pinch red pepper flakes
- 2-3 tsp chopped sage
- 2 pieces bread, toasted
- 1-2 Tbsp butter
- greek yogurt (optional)
Start by bringing the water and chicken stove with the clove onion to a simmer for about 30-45 minutes. Meanwhile rinse the lentils, set aside. Once the broth is ready, remove the onion, and add the rinsed lentils, cook, stirring occasionally for 18-20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat oil in a medium- large skillet, add onions, carrots and celery, saute for 7-8 minutes, then add garlic, 1-2 tsp sage, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Saute for 1 more minute, remove from heat.
Once lentils are cooked, add them, along with the excess broth to a large bowl. Add veggies to cooked lentils, add sausage and carefully toss, then pour into baking dish.
Using a food processor to make bread crumbs with the toasted bread, add in seasonings like garlic powder, salt, pepper and smoked paprika if desired. Sprinkle evenly over the lentil mixture, top with little tabs of butter, distributed evenly.
Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes, removed foil and baked for another 10-15 minutes.
Serve with thin slices of sage and greek yogurt.