Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Sausage and Kale Soup

So it was 78 on Monday.  I had the AC on and everything.  Then on Tuesday, it was Fall.  Chilly, 60 degree, Fall.  I LOVE IT.  

Fall has always been my favorite season.  Don't get me wrong - drinking on a patio is one of my favorite things in the world.  But Fall...I just love it.  It's refreshing, crisp, and a good soup just makes it so cozy.  You know what also comes with Fall?  Colds.  Everyone (including myself) has some kind of something.  My friend Katie, who I work with and who also lives in my building, was feeling particularly not so great.  So soup it is. 

This was a totally random soup.  I'm not sure how I came up with this.  I think I was craving Italian Wedding Soup and was too lazy to roll the meatballs and all that jazz.  This, was delightfully easy, and had deep, tremendous, garlicky good flavor.

Here's how you do dis:

1.5 Lbs Italian Spicy Sausage (without casings)
8-12 Cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth 
1 Large or 2 Small Dried Bay Leaves
1/2 Cup of Ancini De Pepe Pasta 
4 Large Garlic Cloves (roughly chopped) 
10 Cups of Chopped, Cleaned, Kale (one of the huge bags)  
1/2 Cup of Freshly Grated Parmesan 

Brown the sausage in a large pan (mine was 6 Qt) on high for 5-7 minutes or until golden brown.  If the sausage sticks at all, add a bit of water.  Drain any excess fat from the sausage by either resting cooked sausage on paper towels, or by carefully pouring the fat out. Add the sausage back to the pan.  Add half of the kale.  Pour in 4 cups of the chicken stock.  Once kale begins to wilt, add the rest of the kale and about 4 more cups of stock.  Add garlic and bay leaves.  Let the soup simmer for 20 minutes or so.  Next, add 1/2 cup of ancini di pepe.  If you can't find that kind of pasta, you can use ditalini or any other type of small pasta.  The pasta will puff up and absorb a lot of liquid.  Depending on how brothy you like your soup, add more stock accordingly.  I ended up using about 12 cups total to make it stretch.  If you run out of stock, you could easily add 1-2 more cups of water.  It'll still taste great.  Right before you're ready to serve, add the grated parm and stir.  Of course, add more Parmesan on top of each serving.  Serve with some awesome crusty bread or just eat alone.  It's delish. 

Stay hungry! 

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