Petit sale: French for pork ‘n’ beans.

Well, not literally. “Petit sale” (with an acute accent over the final e) might be translated as “little savory/salted.” It is a pork belly version of what we in America might call “salt pork” that has been blanched for up to an hour. Um… that is not quite right either…(read on).

When you make your own bacon (whether you leave it “raw” like pancetta, or slowly hot smoke/oven roast it to an internal temperature of 150 degrees F., you are often left wondering what dishes you should cook or learn to cook and add to your repetoire. Regular weekend rashers are a no-brainer, so when I say “wondering,” I mean “wondering besides cooking the usual rashers.”

Three answers that come to mind, though they are not the only ones: 1) dice the bacon into lardons and make pasta with pesto and lardons; 2) make a serious boston baked bean dish; 3) make petit sale, which is often served with puy lentils (a.k.a. “French lentils”) made to your liking (with carrots and onions, should you prefer) served with a slice of blanched , unsmoked homemade bacon atop it (or serve it over peas, or anything else that might strike your fancy). The bacon is cooked in stock (or water) that is used to cook the lentils. Note: the bacon will swell up most impresively if you are using homemade. Awesome.

Don’t substitute regular lentils for the puy variety, should you go with lentils. The former are inferior in this particular dish.

I like to add some butter to the lentils for creaminess; and I like black pepper ground over the bacon.

If you want more details, you will have to email me or leave a comment.


2 Responses to “Petit sale: French for pork ‘n’ beans.”

  1. Edaline Says:

    Thanks for writing this.

  2. Richard Pillard Says:

    I just had this dish in a private home in Paris. There was pork, like the ham we have in the US plus several kinds of pork sausage. This was cooked with lentils and vegetables; they really don’t prepare baked beans like we do. It’s a homey dish and quite delicious.


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