This is a traditional new year’s eve dish. Cotechino Modena or Cotechino di Modena, also sometimes spelled cotecchino or coteghino, is a fresh sausage made from pork and comes from Modena. Zampone Modena is closely related, but uses the pig’s trotter as a sausage case. There are two kinds of cotechino: Raw and precooked, though most Italians buy the precooked kind, which comes in a foil packet which you have to boil gently for 20 minutes. You should be able to get a ready cooked cotechino in an Italian deli. Serves 4
- 400 grams lentils
- 1 medium onion — halved
- 2 sticks celery
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 20 grams olive oil
- 600 grams cotechino sausage – precooked
- Put the lentils, half the onion and one of the celery sticks in a large
- Cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Simmer over a low heat until
the lentils are tender – about 45 minutes.
- When they are done discard the onion and celery. Chop the remaining onion
and celery finely.
- Heat the oil and butter in a pan. Fry the onion and celery for about 5
- Drain the lentil and add to the pan. Cook over a low heat, stirring
- Season with salt and pepper.
- If using a precooked cotechino, reheat according to the instructions on the packet. If you are using a fresh one, place it in a saucepan, cover with plenty of cold water, bring to a simmer and cook gently for 2 hours for a small (600g) one, up to 4 hours for a larger (1000g) one. At the end of the cooking time, remove from the heat and allow to rest in the cooking liquid for 10 minutes, drain and slice into thick rounds.
- Serve the lentils with slices of the sausage on top.