This is a simple but hearty dish. Probably better suited for winter months but I found a good source for French du Puy green lentils in our area. They had been difficult to find heretofore. The store also had some interesting freshly made Chicken Apple Sausage made without chemicals or nitrates. These lentils stay firm when properly cooked but will still be tender. They have a better tooth in my opinion but are more expensive than regular lentils.
I smoked the sausage with apple wood but a grill would work fine as well. I served the dish on a bed of baby spinach and offered whole grain mustard as a condiment for the sausage. Both are optional.
I served the lentils and sausage with John Spottiswood's romaine salad with creamy basil dressing.
As for a wine this is a hearty dish that can stand up to a hefty red. I opted for a Portuguese Iberian blend from Fenestra Winery in Livermore Valley. The wine called Tourvanillo is a 2006 blend of Touriga, Alvarelhao, Tempranillo, Mourvedre, Malbec, Cabernet and Tinto Cao.
Preapare smoker and heat to 250^. Add sausage and smoke for one hour. Hold at 150^ if the sausage is done before the lentils.
Bring lentils, water and 3/4 tsp Kosher salt to a boil in a heavy pot. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered untill lentils are just tender, 20-25 minutes. Remove form heat and let stand in cooking liquid.
Melt Ghee in saucepan and saute the carrots until al dente. Add the leeks and saute until softened, 6-8 minutes. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant. Drain the lentils and add to the leek mixture with the herbs, salt/garlic pepper and chicken stock. Cook until hot. Taste for seasoning and adjust as necessary.
Line the bottom of a wide bowl with baby spinach. Top with hot lentil mixture and smoked sausage. Serve whole grain mustard table side.