Let me start by saying I pulled this recipe off of Pinterest. I made it to feed the ladies of a party brainstorming meeting. The hubs kind of took over while I was making it and he's made it about 5 times since then!! It's a simple, inexpensive soup that just tastes better after a few days.
We call it Italian Bean and Pasta Soup but the original recipe is Sausage and Bean Soup with Pasta.
A few notes before I divulge the recipe of this delicious soup (which I made for my cookie exchange party, and ate the last of the leftovers today!). We use red kidney beans, we don't drain the sausage and we use small shells pasta. Other than that, we're pretty true to the recipe. Man it's so good!
- 1 cup dried cannellini or cellini beans or 1 15-ounce can of any beans you like, drained
- 1 pound ground sausage, turkey or pork
- 1/2 medium onion, diced
- 1/2 medium carrot, diced
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 6 to 8 cups chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and pepper
- 1 cup ditalini pasta, or any small pasta
- grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
If using dried beans, place them in a pot, cover with cold water and let soak for several hours or overnight. Drain.
In a large pot, brown the sausage. Remove from pot. If there is a lot of fat left in the pot, pour this out but do not wipe out pot. Add onion, carrot and olive oil and saute for 5 minutes until soft. Add garlic and saute about a minute more. Add the tomatoes, 6 cups of the chicken broth, thyme, bay leaf, some salt and pepper, the drained beans (*this is the point to puree the beans if you want to) and the sausage and cover the pot. Cook for an hour over low heat, at a gentle simmer.
If using dried beans, check for doneness at this point. (If using canned beans, add the pasta now.) If the beans are not soft enough, cover the pot again and cook for another 30 minutes or until the beans are soft. Add the pasta and cook, uncovered, until the pasta is tender. Check the seasoning and add more salt and pepper to taste. If the soup is too thick for your liking, you can add more chicken broth.
Serve with grated cheese on top and an extra drizzle of olive oil.
What's YOUR favorite soup?
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