Saturday, October 18, 2014

SOUPer saturdays - sausage and bean soup with pasta

I really do love the blogging world, because one simple search for something so insignificant can lead you straight into the significant life of someone you would have never "met" otherwise. Such is the case with the "Italian Dish" blog.  

I was searching weeks ago for a sturdy whipped cream, and I came across Elaine McCardel's work.  I am in Heaven reading her entries, watching her how-to videos, and being transported straight to her Italian roots via her Michigan kitchen.  I do enjoy so many kinds of foods, but my default is always Italian, and when I imagine what cooking in a true Italian kitchen is like, I think fresh, homemade, laughter, and family.  I can't imagine anything better.

I really haven't spent near as much time as I'd like to scrolling through this gem of a site, but what I have viewed makes me want to be Ms. Elaine's neighbor.  I want to RSVP for her in-home cooking classes and be the recipient of her homemade goodness.  But since I live several states south of her, I'll continue to peruse her wonderful site and try my hand at many of the recipes I've already marked.  

I, unfortunately, injured my back a couple of days ago and have been kind of "stuck" in the house in more ways than one.  The kind of issues I have with my back does not allow me to sit comfortably.  And anyone who knows me knows that lying around is not at all who I am, either.  So… I have been cooking in spurts as my pain tolerance will allow.  Because getting in the car to get groceries has not been an option, I started thinking about what I already had in the house and scoured the blog to find a recipe to match.  This one was a perfect 10!  I did an Italian sausage soup a couple of years ago, but this is different and full of just as much flavor.  It comes together quickly, so give it a try.  Your Italy is less than an hour away!

one year ago: in a pinch pie filling,  autumn chicken stew
two years ago: creamy tomato soup

Sausage and Bean Soup with Pasta
makes 6-8 servings
  • 1 lb Italian sausage
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 1/2 carrot, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 15-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 6-8 cups chicken stock/broth
  • 1 15-oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 tsp fresh thyme, or 1 tsp dried
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup small pasta
  • grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
~ In a large pot, cook sausage until brown and remove.  If a lot of oil is left, pour out, but do not wipe.  

~ Add onion, carrots, and oil, cooking five minutes or until softened.  Add garlic and cook another minute.

~ Add tomatoes, six cups stock, beans thyme, bay leaf, and salt and pepper to taste.  At this point I used my immersion blender to puree some of the soup, but you don't have to. 

~ Add the sausage and cover the pot, cooking on a low simmer for 30-45 minutes.

~ Remove lid and add pasta, cooking until tender.  If soup is too thick, you can add more stock.

~ Top servings with cheese.

Recipe from The Italian Dish