The weather on the East Coast has become a sick joke. I swear Mother Nature already has her April Fool’s Day all planned out and it’s going to be 20 degrees and snowing.
I’ve been dying to jump into spring cooking and start experimenting with all my favorite green vegetables. But my body is still craving stews and soups. March is always a weird time of year for recipe planning. So for the past few weeks I’ve tried to focus on hardy late winter fare that takes well to a little Springification.
I made this easy minestrone soup recipe a few weeks ago when the temperatures were taking a turn for the arctic again. Charlie was working late, so I brought over a quart container of it for us to enjoy while continuing our House of Cards bingefest.
Minestrone soup is already a great one-pot meal. But I tried to make sure that all the food groups were covered by adding some turkey sausage and bulking up the broth with even more veggies and herbs than usual. It’s always best to spoon feed yourself your dinner when there’s political blood being spilled in the background.
How are you dealing with the change of seasons (or lack thereof) in your kitchen? Let me know what you’re cooking in the comments!
Minestrone Soup with Turkey Sausage and Fennel
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3/4 pound turkey sausage preferably, a mix of hot and sweet Italian, casings removed
- 1 small yellow onion diced
- 1 medium carrot peeled and diced
- 1 small fennel bulb trimmed and diced
- 2 large garlic cloves minced
- One 15-ounce can diced or crushed tomatoes
- 8 cups vegetable or chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons salt
- One 15-ounce can cannellini beans drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup gluten-free elbows or orecchiette
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped or torn herbs basil, chives, parsley or a combination
Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven or stock pot. Brown the sausage over high heat, breaking up the meat with your spatula to form small clusters, until cooked through and beginning to crisp, about 4 minutes. Remove to a plate with a slotted spoon.
Add the onions, carrots, and fennel to the sausage drippings. Saute over medium-high heat until soft, 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for another minute, until fragrant. Pour in the tomatoes and simmer until the liquid is reduced and the tomato chunks have softened, 5 minutes. Add the cooked sausage, stock and salt to the pot. Bring to a boil.
Stir in the pasta and beans and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer until the pasta is cooked through. Off the heat stir in the herbs and taste for seasoning. Serve alongside some crusty bread and garnish with a drizzle of olive oil, shaved Parmesan or pecorino.