sunday’s soups… hearty minestrone
this is by far the most requested soup by tomas! i will never forget the first time i made it for him – i thought he was going to eat the whole pot right then and there! whenever i make this, despite the large quantity i make, it doesn’t last more than a few days in our house before it’s gone-baby-gone! although i usually like eating soup for lunch during the week, this soup is so hearty that it really eats more like a meal than a soup, and i often end up having it for dinner while there’s still some left!
i’ve always loved minestrone, but this one is just a bit different than most. first off, it has meat in it, where most minestrones don’t. it also has garbanzo beans and kale, truly making this a one pot meal – protein, veggies, and carbohydrates! it is definitely one of the most intricate soup recipes i make, but even then it’s really not too difficult – it just has a lot of ingredients and therefore can look a bit more daunting than it is.
in my mind it is the perfect soup to eat after a long, chilly day outside raking leaves or hopping from your kids’ soccer and football games! it will warm your hearts, fill your tummies and leave you wanting more with every bowl you finish!!
makes about 8 servings
1 lb ground sage pork sausage (in the tube, i prefer jimmy dean’s)
2 T chopped fresh rosemary
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup red wine
2 red onions, diced
1 30oz can diced tomato
2 14oz cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed thoroughly
1 bunch celery, cut on a bias
3 qt chicken stock
1 cup pasta (i use shells or macaroni usually)
2 cups chopped kale
1 t ground cinnamon
salt & pepper to taste
start by drizzling about a T of olive oil in a large stockpot. heat the pot to medium-high heat and add the sausage, making sure to break it up when it’s in the pot. cook the sausage until it’s done, then transfer it using a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate to soak up the grease.
next add the garlic and rosemary to the pot and saute for 1-2 minutes, making sure not to brown the garlic. add the wine to the pot to deglaze, scraping the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon. let the wine reduce for about 2 minutes, then add the red onion and the cinnamon. mix well to incorporate the wine, garlic, rosemary and cinnamon with the onion. saute the onion until it is nice and soft.
when the onion is soft, add in the can of diced tomatoes, including the juices, the celery and the stock. bring to a boil, then let simmer until the celery is soft (about 30 minutes). while this is cooking, prepare the cup of dried pasta per the boxes instructions. drain and set aside when done.
when the celery is soft, add in the kale, garbanzo beans, pasta and meat and still well. add salt and pepper to taste if it needs it, which it may not especially if you use store bought stock.