For some ease and enjoyment this post-holiday or any time, here is a go-to hearty soup that can well serve as a meal.
My friend’s Christmas evening open house contribution has become the tradition and highlight. It’s moved on to become the answer for a low effort dinner or as an alternative to chili during football or other TV viewing events when pre-prep and minimal interruption is required.
Happy New Year!
Italian Sausage, Spinach and Pasta Soup
- 2 pounds hot or mild uncooked Italian Sausages
- 3 large or 4 small Carrots, sliced
- 1 large Onion, chopped
- 4 Garlic Cloves, chopped
- 3 boxes (32 ounces each) Chicken Broth
- 1 Can (28 ounces) Whole Plum or Diced Tomatoes, with juice (crush whole tomatoes with your hands before adding)
- 2 Cans (15 ounces each) White Beans (Cannellini, Great Northern or Navy), rinsed and drained (see comparison here)
- 1 Tablespoon Dried Basil
- 2 Cups dried shell-shaped Pasta (or other medium shaped pasta)
- 12 ounces of Spinach Leaves (approx.)
- Salt and Pepper
- Grated Parmesan Cheese
- Squeeze sausages from casing into an 8- to 10-quart saucepan over medium high heat and stir often, breaking them apart with a spoon, until browned and crumbly, 8 to 10 minutes. Spoon out and discard all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the pan.
- Add carrots and onion and stir often until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and stir for one more minute. Careful not to scorch garlic.
- Add the chicken broth, crushed or diced tomatoes (including juice), beans and basil and bring to a boil.
- Add pasta, reduce heat and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until pasta is just tender to bite, about 10 minutes. Skim off and discard fat.
- Stir in spinach and cook just until wilted, about 30 seconds.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve with Parmesan Cheese.