Brooding On

Healthified Italian Sausage Soup

We might tend to think of a soup like this as being more appropriate for a cold, winter day, but, if you are attempting to eat in season, this is actually the time to try out this recipe. 

We were able to use the Swiss chard, onions, and new potatoes from our garden for this recipe.    Even if you're not growing these items yourself, you can most likely snag them at your local farmers' market right now. 

2 slices bacon (we use turkey bacon)
1/2 lb. lean Italian sausage
4-6 new potatoes (cut into 1/2" pieces)
1 large onion (or several smaller ones), chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
4 c. water
3.5 c. chicken broth
4 c. chopped fresh kale or Swiss chard leaves (thick stems removed)
1/2 lb. pinto beans (soaked overnight, then cooked all day in crockpot on low heat)
1 c. half-and-half

1. Cook bacon and brown sausage, then set aside.  Crumble bacon, once cool.

2.  In large pot, mix potatoes, onion, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, pepper flakes, water, and broth.  Heat to boiling.  Reduce heat to low; cook uncovered about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3.  Stir in bacon, sausage, greens, and beans.  Cook 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until potatoes and greens are tender. 

4.  Stir in half-and-half; cook until just heated.  Add additional salt to taste.

This was a delicious, spicy soup!  It made enough for us to freeze for a repeat meal later on.  We served it with some goat cheese and crackers and a big salad, but it was hearty enough that it really could've stood alone as the meal.  Enjoy!