Petit Salé aux Lentilles (Pork with Lentils)

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A pork classic for wintertime, which has to be cooked with the world-famous French lentils known as lentilles du Puy. It is traditionally cooked with petit salé pork, a pork that has been brined in salt for two days to preserve it longer. This recipe is adapted to traditional American pork.

Difficulty: Medium

Hands-on: 35 minutesTotal: 2 hours 35 minutes

Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 8 oz. bacon, cut in ½"-wide slices
  • 2 onions (1 peeled, 1 peeled and sliced)
  • 2 lbs. pork shoulder
  • 2 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 Tbsp. thyme
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 cup lentilles du Puy

Directions

  • Put a large French oven or stove pot over medium heat. Melt the butter, then raise the heat to medium-high and add the bacon slices. Cook for 2–3 minutes, until the fat releases. Add sliced onion to the bacon. Stir well, and let the onions cook slowly with the bacon, about 3–5 minutes. They should become translucent, not brown.
  • Add the pork shoulder and brown it on each side for 5 minutes. Add carrots and stir well. Pour in the water, and bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Take the remaining peeled onion and nail the cloves in it. Add to the water. Add the bay leaf, thyme, salt, and pepper. When it reaches a boil, cover and reduce to low. Simmer for 90 minutes.
  • Add the lentils and stir well. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover again and put back on low heat. Simmer for another 30 minutes.
  • Remove bay leaf. Serve warm.