Last week, I was naive.
When temperatures hit 70 here in New York City, I made the mistake of declaring to the world (via Twitter) that it smelled like spring. In my defense, it did. It smelled like grass and flowers. Hope and limitless potential. Short sleeves and miniskirts.
I reveled in it.
Then. Came this week.
The wind had changed and all of a sudden it smelled barren. Heartless. Frigid.
It started to unnerve me after a while. The scent seeping into my pores.
And so I did the only thing I could. I stewed. I stewed until my entire house smelled of warmth. Roasted red pepper lentil sausage warmth.
Now that is something worth reveling in.
Italian Sausage and Roasted Red Pepper Lentil Stew
Serves 4, adapted from Closet Cooking
1/2 lb Italian sausage, casings removed
1 tbsp oil
1 onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
red pepper flakes, to taste
1 cup red wine
1 cup red lentils
2 cups chicken broth
1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes
2 roasted red bell peppers, diced
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp oregano
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper, to taste
parsley and feta cheese for garnish
- Cook the sausage in a large pot, breaking into crumbles with a spatula as you go. Set aside.
- Heat the oil in the same pot. Add the onion and carrots, and saute until tender, about 10 minutes.
- Add the garlic and chili pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add the red wine and deglaze the pan. Add the sausage, lentils, chicken broth, tomatoes, roasted red bell peppers, bay leaf, oregano, and balsamic vinegar. Bring to a boil.
- Reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the lentils are cooked, about 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle into bowls and top with chopped parsley and feta crumbles.