Valentine Warner’s boiled streaky bacon with Puy lentils

  • serves 4
  • Easy

This recipe from Valentine Warner is modest yet deeply satisfying. This is a great, alternative way to use bacon, but you will probably have to order it in advance from your butcher.



  • smoked streaky bacon 700g whole piece with rind
  • shallots 8
  • carrots 4 medium
  • bay leaves 2
  • thyme 5-6 sprigs
  • black peppercorns 6

lentil sauce

  • Puy lentils 125g
  • butter 25g
  • shallots 2
  • white wine vinegar 1 tsp
  • dry white wine 75ml
  • Dijon mustard 1 heaped tbsp
  • golden caster sugar 1 tsp
  • double cream 150ml


  • Step 1

    Put the bacon in a large flameproof casserole or pan. Cover with water and bring to the boil. As soon as it is boiling, take the pan off the heat and carefully drain away the water. This will help reduce saltiness.

  • Step 2

    Return the pan to the heat and cover the bacon with plenty of water. Peel the shallots and carrots but leave intact. Add to the pan with the bay leaves, thyme and peppercorns.

  • Step 3

    Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer gently for 2-2½ hours or until the bacon is very tender. Turn the bacon halfway through and top up the water if needed. Once cooked, take off the heat and leave in the stock while you make the sauce.

  • Step 4

    Half-fill a pan with water and bring to the boil. Add the lentils and boil for 20 minutes. Melt the butter in a pan over a low heat. Peel the shallots and slice thinly. Add to the pan with the butter and cook very gently until soft, stirring occasionally. Pour over the vinegar and wine, add 300ml of the bacon stock and bring to the boil.

  • Step 5

    Simmer on a high heat until the liquid is reduced to around 100ml. Stir in the mustard, sugar and cream. Heat through for a minute, stirring constantly. Season. Drain the lentils in a sieve then stir into the mustard sauce.

  • Step 6

    Lift the bacon out of the stock and slice thickly. Spoon the lentils onto plates and top with bacon and the shallots and carrots, which will be soft but delicious nonetheless.

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 870
  • Carbs 27.2g
  • Protein 37.4g
  • Fat 68g
  • Salt 6.26g
  • Fibre 5.3g