Sunday, January 29, 2012

Italian Chicken and Vegetable Soup

This has become one of my favorite soups to make simply because the leftovers are so good! This is also a great soup to clean out any remnant vegetables you have left in the crisper bin. (*wink!) I would definitely recommend using a sweet yellow pepper in the recipe. That little hint of sweetness works great with the spicy sausage and even though they are pricey per pound, they end up only being about $2 a piece.  

A note about noodles: My friend and neighbor Bri turned me on to this soup idea: Cook your noodles separately and ladle the soup on top of them in the bowl rather than pouring them into the soup. This is a great trick!  It saves the soup from that added starchiness and keeps the noodles from getting mushy in your leftovers. Thanks Bri!

Italian Chicken and Vegetable Soup
3 fresh spicy Italian chicken sausages, casings removed
1 medium sweet onion
4 stalks of celery
2 carrots, peeled
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 medium fresh and seeded, or 14 oz. can of drained tomatoes
1 medium zucchini
1 yellow sweet pepper
1 green sweet pepper
6 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
1 tsp dried basil
½ tsp dried thyme
¼ tsp dried rosemary
¼ tsp marjoram
Salt and pepper
14oz can cannellini or other white bean, drained
3 cups cooked small tube pasta, like diatalini

Dice up your onion, celery and carrots and sauté with some olive oil in your big soup pot over medium-high heat until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken sausage, and break it up into pieces as you cook it through. Then add the minced garlic and chopped tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes mush a bit, about 3 minutes. Pour in the chicken broth and water and bring to a boil over high heat.

While you wait, dice up the remaining vegetables. Carefully add the veggies and the dried herbs to the boiling soup. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Test a carrot to see that it is not too crunchy. Pour in the drained and rinsed cannellini beans and allow to cook only 2 more minutes. Remove from the heat.
Ladle the soup into a bowl over a half a cup of the cooked noodles.  

Store your noodles and the soup separately and toss the noodles in a bit of olive oil if they are sticky.

Enjoy the soup! And the leftovers :)

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