I call them this because my friend George, in Edinburgh, Scotland, taught me this recipe.
3 cups of French Green Lentils (aka: Puy Lentils - these are the ones that hold their shape when cooked. This recipe will not work with “soup lentils”)
1 medium onion, chopped finely
1 cup diced sausage (any kind will do, even vegetarian types; I like whatever I use to have some herby spiciness to it)
Splash of white wine (optional, but optimal)
2 Tbs. butter - olive oil works just fine too
Salt & pepper to taste
Melt the butter or olive oil in a large heavy saucepan. Dump in the onions and sausage, splash in your wine. Let the onions get soft, then add some salt and pepper.
Add your lentils and enough water to almost cover them. Not too much - you’re not aiming for lentil soup, just lentils.
Cover and let them cook until chewy-tender, but not mushy. Check periodically to stir - you also may have to add a bit more water.
Salt and pepper to taste.
You can also add a sprig of fresh rosemary or oregano or thyme to the onion/sausage mix. That’s very nice. If you don’t have fresh, though, don’t bother.
You can serve these by themselves with a big hunk of crusty bread, more sausage, and some good hard cheese (that’s how George likes them). Or you can put them over a cooked grain, like quinoa or brown rice. Sometimes I’ll let them cool and then add more fresh herbs, sliced grape or cherry tomatoes, hunks of feta cheese, and ribbons of spinach.
**** Cheater, cheater, lentil eater: I sometimes use my rice cooker to make plain lentils and then season them up after they are cooked. Use 1.5 cups of water for every 1 cup of lentils.