Tag Archives: sausage

Soup with Sausage, Silverbeet (Chard) and White Beans.

30 Aug

Soup soup soup! French onion soup is such a special dish. So nice to have your recipe for it B.

This recipe is a soup my family have been making a bit of recently… it is hearty and wintry, and special enough to serve as a meal for weeknight guests.

I buy sausages made by our local butcher made with pork, fennel and chilli, they flavour up the entire soup beautifully. I would think that any good quality sausages will work well. Here in Australia we call this leafy vegetable ‘silverbeet’, but I understand it is simply ‘chard’ in the USA. I have made it to our new house finally (yay!) and I thought it fitting for the first meal I cooked to be this soup.

I am not sure if you collect Parmesan rinds, but this is a great way to use them. You don’t eat the rind, you remove it from the soup before eating, but it imparts a flavour through the soup as it cooks. So don’t throw them away… keep them in the fridge for dishes like this.

Here is what you will need:

Sausages, cannellini beans, garlic, rosemary, onion, carrot, celery, silverbeet (chard), olive oil, pepper, and a dash of vinegar. Possibly salt too, but taste before adding any. Also, some chicken stock, tomato paste and the rind of some Parmesan, which missed the photo shoot. Must have been still getting their hair done.

I started by tearing the casing off the sausages and rolling small meatballs from the filling.

I heated up a little olive oil in a heavy bottomed soup pot, and then added the meatballs to brown over medium heat.

While they were cooking I chopped up some onion, carrot and celery, the classic trio, and then added them along with some chopped rosemary to the browned meatballs. I left them to cook and absorb all of the flavour the sausage had given to the oil.

While that was cooking away I prepared everything else. I minced garlic, then washed and drained the canned beans. I removed the stem from the silverbeet, which is hard to take a photo of without a tripod, but I hold it by the stem, and then run the knife downward along the edges of the stem. It is easier than it looks. I then washed it well and sliced it up roughly.

When I was happy that the onion was transparent, I added tomato paste and the minced garlic to the pot, and let that cook for about a minute before adding in the stock, silverbeet, Parmesan rind and beans. My pot overfloweth!

I put the lid on, opening it up to stir from time to time. As the silverbeet cooks down it starts to resemble soup. I think I needed to chop my silverbeet a bit finer than this. So use this as a guide for a bit large, OK?

I simmered the soup for about twenty minutes, just prior to serving I added a dash of vinegar. This gives a nice acid balance.

Lovely vibrant colours and flavour to match. I removed the rind, added a grind of black pepper and it was ready to go.

I am glad to have documented this recipe… as I will be returning to make it myself, over and over.

Over to you B… are you in a soupy mood?


serves 4

1 tablespoon olive oil
250g (1/2 pound) sausage. I used pork, fennel and chilli, but any good fresh italian sausage would work. Remove casings and roll in to small meatballs
1 brown onion, chopped
1 medium carrot, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 garlic cloves finely chopped, crushed or grated
1 large bunch silverbeet
2 cans cannellini beans, rinsed well and drained
1 litre (1 quart) chicken stock
1 Parmesan rind (if you have one handy)
1 generous tablespoon cider vinegar
Pepper and possibly salt, to taste

Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Brown the meat balls, for around 8 minutes, before adding the onion, carrot, celery and rosemary. Continue to cook, stirring frequently for around 10 minutes or until the onion is transparent.

Add the tomato paste and garlic, stir for a minute then add the stock, silverbeet, beans and Parmesan rind. With the lid on, cook for 20 minutes over medium low heat, stirring from time to time. Remove the rind before serving, and season with the vinegar plus a little salt and pepper to taste. Serve. Eat. Say “yum”.

Pasta with Italian Sausage and Fava Beans

7 Jul

I love the detour into Italy, Alice! I’ve always wanted to visit Italy, so I will do so virtually with this pasta dish.

I found these fava beans at the farmers market. They are also known as broad beans.

I have never cooked with fava beans before, but I’ve always liked them in restaurant dishes and then I saw the most wonderful looking pasta recipe on a local Minnesota food blog RelishingIt.com. So this was just my excuse to finally try cooking with them.

So first, the fava beans need to be shelled. They grow in pods, like most beans and peas.

Then they need to be blanched – which just means that they should be dropped into a pot of boiling water for about three minutes, scooped out and then dropped into ice water.

The pale green outer skin peels right off, revealing a bright green bean.

Set them aside and begin the pasta sauce.

I browned up some spicy Italian sausage links and set them aside

Sauteed some chopped onion and garlic

Sliced up the Italian sausage and added it to the pan to brown up a bit more

Poured in the canned tomatoes, tomato paste and spices. I used a jar of tomatoes canned by my friends Dee and Bernt – they were delicious! I added some hot pepper flakes to add a little more zing! to the dish

And let it all cook down.

As the sauce was cooking, I brought a large pan of water to a boil,  added some fresh fettuccini and let it boil for a few minutes. Check the package for specific cooking times, keeping in mind that fresh pasta cooks more quickly than dried pasta.

I drained the pasta and added it along with the fava beans to the sauce

Tossed and topped with some fresh grated parmesan.

I got the large shreds of cheese by using a vegetable peeler on the chunk of parmesan. Using a nice Parmigiano-Reggiano will add so much flavor to your dish, so don’t skimp on the quality of the cheese.

Serve with a nice chianti.

Alice, I like the way your mind thinks and can’t wait to see where we’re going next.

Pasta with Italian Sausage and Fava Beans

1 pound fresh or dried pasta – fettuccini, pappardelle or other wide pasta
1 pound spicy Italian sausage
1 1/2 cups shelled fava beans
1/2 medium onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried Italian spices or oregano and basil
1 1/2 cups crushed canned tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
½ teaspoon of red pepper flakes
Cracked black pepper
Shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano, for garnish

Bring a pan of water to a boil.  Once it is boiling, add the shelled fava beans.  Boil for two to three minutes.  Remove the beans from the heat, drain and place them into a bowl of ice water.  Let cool in the water for a couple of minutes. Then, remove the light green peel from the beans using your hands.  The fava beans will be bright green in color.  Set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil for the pasta.  Meanwhile, begin making the sauce.  Heat a large skillet and add the Italian sausage links to it.  When they are browned, remove and set aside.  Add the onion and garlic to the pan with a splash of oil and continue to cook for a few minutes over medium-high heat until the onions start to become somewhat tender.  Slice the sausage links and return the slices to the pan with the onions. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste and spices.  Cook for a few minutes until the flavors have combined a bit and the sauce has thickened. Add the fava beans and cook a few more minutes.  Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings.

Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water when the sauce is nearly done. Cook pasta until al dente, remembering that fresh pasta cooks in less time than dried pasta. Fresh pasta can be purchased in the refrigerated section of the grocery store or made at home.  Reserve a bit of the pasta water, in case you need to use it to thin out your sauce.  Drain pasta and combine with the sauce.  Top with fresh cracked black pepper and  shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano

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