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Pork Sausage with Lentils is a classic New Year's Day dish in Italy

Pork Sausage and Lentils

The best cotechino comes from the Modena area and dates back to the sixteenth century. Legend has it that in 1511 when Mirandola (near Modena) was under attack by Pope Giulio II's armed forces, the local residents butchered their pigs and stored the meat in cotenna (pork skin) and zampe (pig legs), to keep their animals from ending up in the hands of the enemy.
Cotechino and zampone are both made from lean pork meat, fat and cotenna, delicately flavored with herbs and spices: cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg.
In 1999 cotechino from Modena achieved IGP status and effective 2017 the addition of ingredients like MSG and milk solids is no longer permitted. Nowadays when you buy an IGP cotechino from Modena it's lean and delicious!
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Keyword holiday, lentils, new years, sausage
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 4510kcal


  • 1 kilogram Pork sausage
  • 300 grams Lentils rinsed
  • 1 Carrot minced
  • 1 Celery minced
  • 1/2 Onion medium, minced
  • 1 Peperoncino small
  • 40 grams Olive oil
  • 4 Bay leaves
  • Salt


  • Cook the sausage according to package instructions, which will usually be as follows:
  • Pierce the pork sausage package on all sides, using a small wooden skewer stick.
  • Place in a pot of cold water large enough to cover the entire package.
  • Bring the water to a simmer and simmer for several hours.
  • Sauté the carrot, celery and onion in olive oil until tender, about 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the lentils, peperoncino and bay leaves, and cover with salted water.
  • Cook the lentils according to package instructions or until just tender.
  • Remove the pork sausage from the package and slice into slices 1 centimeter (1/2 inch) wide.
  • Place the lentils in a serving dish and add the sliced sausage.
  • Heat thoroughly in the oven before serving.


Serving: 150g | Calories: 4510kcal | Carbohydrates: 193g | Protein: 230g | Fat: 309g | Saturated Fat: 94g | Cholesterol: 720mg | Sodium: 6456mg | Potassium: 5725mg | Fiber: 95g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 11237IU | Vitamin C: 37mg | Calcium: 307mg | Iron: 34mg