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Cotechino with Lentils...A true Italian New Years Tradition

29 December 2019

Cotechino with Lentils

Italy is a Country well known for its great traditions & culture, and when it comes to special times in the year like Christmas and New Years, Italian's across the world follow these famous traditions with their families and friends. A popular Italian tradition at Christmas is the soft indulging Panettone & Pandoro that are shared as gifts or enjoyed at the heart of the dinner table on Christmas day.

A true Italian Tradition at New Years Eve is...Cotechino with Lentils. Midnight is the time to break out a platter of Cotechino with Lentils, or its Italian translation, cotechino con le lenticchie. The cotechino is boiled, sliced and served on top of a bed of gently braised lentils. The belief is that if you start the New Year by eating this dish, it will bring you prosperity, wealth and good fortune for the coming year. 


What is Cotechino?

Cotechino is a traditional type of sausage that comes from Emilia-Romagnia, Modena Italy. The word 'Cotechino' comes from the word 'Cotica' which means pork rind. It's not a part of the pig that is usually used in a sausage due to the length of time it takes to cook. In fact, Cotechino simmers for a couple of hours so that the pork rind becomes meltingly good. Cotechino has a PGI (“Protected Geographical Indication”) status from the region it originates from. 

Zampone is another PGI product. It is made with the same mixture as cotechino, but the skin of a pig’s front trotter is used for the casing. It is made with a mixture of lean pork meat, fat and rind, which gives it a classic salty and spicy taste. The name 'Zampone' comes from the Italian word for “trotter”.

These can be purchased vacuum packed from Italian Deli's and Butchers. Our favourite & recommended products are from the popular Veroni brand. You can find these products right here at Cicero's to enjoy for your New Years Tradition. 



Why Lentils?

You may be wondering why Lentils are used in this Traditional Italian dish? Lentils are seen as coin-shaped legumes which has a relation to wealth. It is therefore believed that Lentils are symbolic for this tradition and so it is always served with Cotechino or Zampone at Midnight New Years Eve to bring you prosperity & wealth in the new year.

Lentils can be purchased from almost any Supermarket or Delicatessen and come in dry form or in tins depending on your prefered cooking style. One of the best Brands to look for when purchasing Lentils is 'La Fiammante'. 



Want to start your New Year off the Italian way?

Now that you have understood this Italian Tradition that is so widely followed across the world, will you start your New Year off the Italian Way? Check out our great NYE bundles here at Cicero's to find the exact products you need to make your very own Cotechino with Lentils. Here's a great recipe that you can follow too.

If you already know this popular Tradition and do this with your families on New Years Eve, please leave us your comments below! 


We wish you a healthy and prosperous New Year! From all at Cicero's...


New Years Eve Bundles

1 Comment(s)
  1. Guest

    Love this recipe, reminds me of my childhood and this was always a favourite of my father. Great way to see in the New Year.

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