This is one of those recipes that was born standing in front of my open freezer on a Saturday morning, clueless as to what we were going to have for dinner. My eyes landed on the Italian sausage that I get through a co-op of which I’m a member. On the shelf above were containers of frozen broth made from leftover roast chicken bones. OK, soup – Italian … tomatoes … garlic … you see how my mind works? So, I started grabbing staples from my stores, and ended up with the picture below. Remember, I do everything the long hard way, so I’ve included suggestions for the sake of time and simplicity. I dry tomatoes in my dehydrator in the summer, so I’ve always got them on hand. I usually have kale in the winter garden, but thanks to a run-in with the geese, my kale is no more. This was some organic red kale I’d grabbed at a local store. Will someone tell my why the geese turned up their bills at kale when I offered it to them out in their pen, but when they took a wander around the property they suddenly decided they couldn’t get enough of it?
Winter Italian Sausage Soup
1 pound Sweet Italian Sausage
1 cup dry beans, soaked (or 1-2 cans of some sort of white bean)
6 cups chicken broth
1-2 cloves garlic, crushed and diced (or half the head like I did)
1 cup dried tomatoes (or you can use canned tomatoes)
Small bunch of kale, stems removed and roughly chopped
Red pepper flakes (optional)
Brown sausage in soup pot. Add garlic and cook for a minutes. Add chicken broth and beans, simmer for about an hour until beans are tender (you can skip this cooking time if you use canned beans). Add dried tomatoes and simmer for another 15 or 20 minutes (skip the cooking time if you use canned tomatoes). Add kale and simmer for another few minutes. I like to be able to chew my kale a little bit, so I don’t cook it much longer than 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and red pepper flakes.
OK, I feel better now. I recently noticed I hadn’t blogged a recipe in a very long time, and had been boring the heck out of people with the geese and chickens.