Monday, December 1, 2008

Sausage Kale Soup (or Mel's Minestrone)

I spent way to much time searching through cookbooks and the internet for the perfect minestrone recipe. My requirements weren't too rough: 1)It contains link sausage 2)It has kale 3)I don't have to buy things like zucchini--however carrots and potatoes were ok to need to buy. 4)It also has pasta and cannellini (white) beans. Aaaahh...the joys of trying to cook while pregnant....very definite ideas of what I need to eat tonight emerge quickly. Amazingly enough, in my searching, I couldn't find a recipe that fit my demands (I hate it when that happens). It did dawn on me that maybe what I was looking for wasn't really minestrone soup at all, but I thought it should be called that.

Saute 1/2 chopped onion and one link (about 3 oz) of mild Italian sausage in a soup pot until sausage is browned. Add 2 chopped carrots and saute briefly before adding 1 c tomato juice and 4 - 5 cups chicken/turkey broth. If you have the rind (the hard part you can't eat) off of Parmesan cheese, throw that in now too. Simmer for 20 minutes (or longer). Add 2 c (one 15-oz can) cannellini beans and continue to simmer. About 10 minutes before serving, add a bunch of chopped kale and 1/4 - 1/3 c small pasta (like small shells or orzo). Remove the parmesan rind and serve hot.

I used my turkey broth from my skinny turkey. It was all the seasoning the soup needed! The flavor was incredible. Assuming you aren't using broth made from a chicken/turkey stuffed with sage and rosemary aromatics, you will want to season it a little---possibly a sage leaf or two thrown in and a rosemary sprig when you add the liquid or a different route completely--the classic oregano/basil/thyme seasonings would work great too.

The family loved it. As it is to be expected now, on the first bowl J ate everything but the kale. For the second bowl he picked out the sausage first and then ate some of the beans/pasta/carrots. M ate two bowls as well---excluding the kale from both. With so little sausage, it was quite exciting for both kids to find some sausage in their bowls. I found I didn't need a lot of sausage to get a lot of flavor. Curtis and I also had a couple of bowls and I was sad to relinquish the leftovers to his lunch tomorrow.


Kate G. said...

Sounds like the soup I've fashioned around here the past two weeks. Mine had buffalo hot sausage, yard chard (technical term of course), potatoes, carrots for Z, and white beans. cooked up garlic & onions, added the sausage, then the other stuff and broth. At the end, mushed up the potatoes a little to thicken the broth and simmered. I did this again a few days ago but with some country ham instead. Yum yum yum. I think our taste buds are on the same journey this week.

Michelle Cato said...

wait a minute! did i miss an important announcement???????
am i correct in reading the word pregnant??

Melani said...

Yep.....we announced in Sunday School several weeks. See, Curtis wasn't joking when he told you a while back I was pregnant! :)

Michelle Cato said...

OH WOW!! See you get sick and see what you miss?
Well here's a belated congrats!! That is very exciting news. :)