Friday, January 23, 2009

Tuscan Sausage and Bean Soup

This is one of my favorite soups for when the chilly weather hits. And it's SO easy! I'm not one to follow recipes verbatim...they really are just guidelines, so a lot of these measurements are guess-timates. Do what works for you!

Italian Sausage and Bean Soup

1 package of Jimmy Dean spicy breakfast sausage (it's gluten-free and most Italian sausages are not)
1 can garbanzo or cannelini beans
1 can diced tomatoes
1 cup diced onion
1 cup diced fresh yellow squash
1 cup diced fresh zucchini
1/2 cup frozen spinach
2 teaspoons fresh minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 bay leaf
salt to taste
4 cups water
Parmesan, Reggiano or Manchengo cheese shavings (I don't do this because of my dairy allergy, but it sure does make a pretty meal!)

Brown sausage and onion in large stock pot. Drain and pat dry to eliminate as much grease as possible. Add remaining ingredients (EXCEPT squash and zucchini) and bring to boil. Simmer for 30 minutes. Add squash and zucchini and simmer for additional 15 or until the vegetables are al dente. Remove bay leaf. Top with shaved cheese. Serve with grilled polenta or corn muffins.

This always makes enough for N and I to have dinner, lunch leftovers and usually another meal or two to freeze for later.

For additional yummy and economic recipes, visits the girls over at the Grocery Cart Challenge Recipe Swap!


The Kennedy's said...

That sounds delish! I think I am going to make it one night this week.

Cubstarr said...

That sounds like a very hearty dish! ;) way better than the progresso and cambell that I "cook" up. LOL!!! I really should start cooking again...

Mrs. Bick said...

Interesting. Jason likes to make a knock-off version of The Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana which is very similar.

Personally, soups are so easy and economical and so much tastier than the canned versions, I'm not sure that we won't start making more in the near future.

Duncan was surprised that we could make our own soups, that they didn't only come in a can. We haven't been making too many soups, since that would turn the chef-du-jour into a short order cook for that meal, since not everyone is a fan of the soup. But we are getting there. We are getting there.

Leslie said...

Sounds pretty good! I'll have to try it soon. I'm not too adventurous with veggies beyond the typical carrots, onions, celery, peppers, so it will be fun to add squash and zuccini!

Like Mrs. B...I love to make the Olive Garden knock off of Pasta Fagioli. And I'm always looking for something new to try.

Thanks for sharing!

Nature Nut said...

This is something I can actually eat and it sounds great! Thanks for sharing! xoxoxo

Mom on the Verge said...

I made this yesterday, and it was FABULOUS! I used almost a pound of Italian sausage and some red pepper flakes. I also substituted some marvelous homemade chicken broth for the water. I had thought it would need some starch (like elbow noodles or something), but it was just fine without.

I had some of the leftovers for lunch today, and we'll have the other quart for dinner later in the week. THANKS!!!

Leslie said...

Taking advantage of the somewhat cooler temps today, I made this for dinner. Of course I made modifications, but I love how easy this soup is. I thought it was yummy. Mike took one bite and said it was too "beany". I did add a can of red kidney beans b/c I love them, but I thought it was great. I love that I didn't have to add a ton of salt and other spices, but it had it's own yummy flavor without much addition.

Thanks for sharing.