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Cold Lentil Salad with Smoked Sausage in a Bowl
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Cold Sausage Lentil Salad

A delicious and refreshing cold lentil salad with smoked sausage that can be served cold or hot. 
Course Salad, Side Dish
Cuisine American, barbecue side dish
Keyword cold lentil salad, smoked sausage lentil salad
Servings 10 cups

Ingredients

For the Smoked Sausage

  • 1 lb Italian style bulk sausage not in casings, broken up into quarter sized pieces (pork or chicken sausage)

For the Lentil Salad

  • 2 cups lentils
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 8 thyme stems
  • 2/3 cups carrots, diced
  • 2/3 cups diced celery or onions (one or the other, see notes)
  • 2/3 cups cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced (optional)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

Dressing

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • salt to taste

Instructions

To Smoke the Sausage

  • Preheat smoker to 275 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Place sausage spread out on a large foil-lined cookie sheet in small clumps.
  • Smoke for 60-90 minutes. Look for a darker color on the exterior while still moist. Check the larger chunks for temperature, and pull when they reach 165 degrees F. Remove, and break up into smaller pieces if necessary. Set aside. 

For the Salad

  • In a large stock pot bring the lentils, chicken stock, bay leaves, and thyme, to a boil, and then reduce heat to a simmer. Cook approximately 30 minutes, or until the lentils are slightly al dente. (Some styles of lentils may cook to different times, so check the recommended length from your package)
    Drain the liquid and place the lentils in a large bowl.  
  • Add the carrots, celery or onions, bell pepper,  the smoked sausage, and salt. Toss together. 
    Mix in the dressing. Taste and adjust salt to your preferences. Serve now (warm), or let cool and serve later. 

Dressing

  • Place all ingredients in a bowl and whisk together. 

Notes

Depending on your preference you can add onions or celery to the salad. They both provide crunch and acidity. I find it's a bit too much adding both of them, so I like to stick to one. Some also may not prefer the flavor of raw onions, so in those cases it may be best to stick to the celery.