Kale, White Bean and Sausage Soup

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Back in my carnivorous days, one of my favorite soups was the Zuppa Toscana at Olive Garden. Before I had Parker, I would meet my friend Maggie there on an almost weekly basis. After I had Parker (and I was working full-time from home and working on my dissertation), free time went out the window, but I still craved my usual soup, salad and bread stick lunch. My favorite parts of the soup were the smooth, salty broth and the heartiness of the kale and potatoes.
So, after a couple of trips to Olive Garden for some soup “samples,” I made a version that hit the spot and even though I no longer eat pork, adding the sausage in is the last stage so carnivores and vegetarians alike can get their mileage out of this substantial soup. It also helps that it comes together in less than 30 minutes.
Here’s what you’ll need:
1 pkg. sausage (we like the Jimmy Dean sage, but hot sausage is also excellent)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
12 oz. kale, thoroughly washed and coarsely chopped
2 potatoes, peeled and diced into very small pieces
2 Tbsp. water
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 cans cannelloni beans, including liquid
4 cups (1 carton) vegetable of chicken broth

Start off by cooking the sausage until browned. When it’s done, move the sausage to a paper-towel-lined plate and set aside.

Meanwhile, put two tablespoons of olive oil and the two tablespoons of water in a large stock pot. Add in the coarsely chopped kale, cover the pot and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes or until kale is just tender, stirring occasionally.

Add the garlic, salt, pepper, beans (including liquid), chopped potato and the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes. When there’s 5 minutes left, add the sausage back in. (I’ll dish out my portion before I add in the sausage, making sure that the potatoes are cooked all the way through.)

This hearty soup is packed with calcium, potassium, protein and antioxidants. Oh and of course, it’s delicious. I like to serve this with (you guessed it) salad and bread sticks. It hits the spot every time.
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One thought on “Kale, White Bean and Sausage Soup

  1. Eliza December 18, 2013 / 6:24 pm

    i would
    add some cream and crumbled bacon to the soup like olive garden, but yours is the healthier version and equally delish

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