This was a fun fall recipe to make with the man cub, adapted from For the Love of Cooking. Warm, delicious, fairly nutritious and easy to heat up in a thermos for lunch the next day. I also doubled it and froze half to save for another night. (Freezer instructions further down)
You start by sautéing half an onion in 2 teaspoons of olive oil until they’re soft and translucent. I believe that 83.4% of good recipes start this way.
Then comes the magical italian sausage of joy. 12-16oz, depending on the size of the package you buy. More can only be better, right. Break it up as you cook it so the pieces are small and cooked through.
Add 4 cloves or minced garlic or just a big old spoon full. This was for a double batch.
Next add 4 cups of chicken broth and 28 ounces of pureed tomatoes. I just threw diced tomatoes in the blender.
Stir in your spices, 1 tsp dried basil, 1/2 tsp dried oregano, a pinch of crushed red pepper, and salt and pepper to taste. My family hates spicy but I still threw in the pinch of red pepper flakes. It just gave it a tiny bit of warmth but I got no complaints and my people are GOOD at complaining about too much spice.
Cover and let it simmer for as long as you feel like. Thirty minutes should be fine but two hours is better. Who has two hours to simmer?
Then bring the soup to a boil and cook the pasta according to package directions. I love smaller pasta in this dish but feel free to use whatever kind you like.
When the pasta is cooked, add 2 or more cups of chopped fresh baby spinach and 2 Tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley.
Stir to wilt and warm it all and then serve hot with grated parmesan on top.
For a freezer meal, do everything through the long simmer. Then cool and freeze in a Ziploc bag. Chop the spinach and parsley and freeze in a smaller Ziploc. Then assemble as directed.
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 12-16 oz. pork or turkey Italian sausage
- ½ onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 28 oz can pureed tomatoes (I use diced and puree them in the blender)
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 2 15 oz cans white beans, drained
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- Pinch crushed red pepper
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup of your choice of pasta
- 1-2 cups of fresh baby spinach
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese for garnish
Heat the olive oil in a large over medium heat. Add the diced onion and sauté for a few minutes until translucent softened. Crumble the sausage into the pan and cook until no more pink remains. Add the garlic and stir for 60 seconds. Then add the chicken broth, pureed tomatoes, drained beans, and spices. Cover and simmer 30-90 minutes.
Bring the soup back to a boil and add pasta, cooking according to package directions. When pasta is al dente, add fresh parsley and spinach and stir just to wilt and heat through. Serve with fresh grated parmesan.
If you over-pasta, it will turn out more like a casserole than a soup. It’s still delicious, just not a soup.Feel free to add more sauce as needed. This is not an exact science.
For a freezer meal, do everything through the long simmer. Then cool and freeze in a Ziploc bag. Chop the spinach and parsley and freeze in a smaller Ziploc. Then assemble as directed above.