Pasta with Sausage, Kale and White Beans

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America’s Test Kitchen 

INGREDIENTS 

Servings: 4
Start to finish: 1 hour
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound hot Italian sausage, casings removed
1 onion, chopped fine
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh oregano or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
8 ounces (2 1/4 cups) orecchiette
12 ounces kale, stemmed and chopped
1 ounce Pecorino Romano cheese, grated (1/2 cup), plus extra for serving
Salt and pepper

 

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DIRECTIONS

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add sausage and cook, breaking meat into 1/2-inch pieces, until lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in onion and beans and cook until onion is softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in garlic, oregano, fennel seeds, and pepper flakes and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Stir in broth and water, increase heat to high, and bring to boil. Stir in pasta and half of kale. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and simmer vigorously for 4 minutes. Place remaining kale in pot without stirring, cover, and cook until kale is just tender, about 4 minutes. Stir to incorporate kale and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until most of liquid is absorbed and pasta is tender, 3 to 6 minutes.

Off heat, stir in Pecorino and remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste; serve, passing extra Pecorino separately.

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Sausage and White Bean Soup with Winter Greens

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  • 1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 package (12 oz) chicken sausage, sliced
  • 1 can (16 oz) white beans
  • 1 can (15 oz) “no salt added” diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano
  • 1 can (15 oz) reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 cups chopped baby kale, spinach or chard
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Heat oil in large pot over medium heat. Add sausage slices and cook 2 minutes. Add undrained beans, undrained tomatoes and broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook 10 minutes. Add greens and cook just until they are bright green and tender, about 2 minutes. Season with pepper to taster.

Oktoberfest

* – from wikipedia

Oktoberfest is a 16-day festival celebrating beer held annually in Munich, Bavaria, Germany, running from late September to the first weekend in October. It is one of the most famous events in Germany and is the world’s largest fair, with more than 6 million people from around the world attending the event every year. To the locals, it is not called Oktoberfest, but “die Wiesn” – after the colloquial name of the fairgrounds themselves. The Oktoberfest is an important part of Bavarian culture, having been held since 1810. Other cities across the world also hold Oktoberfest celebrations, modeled after the original Munich event.

OK. Here in the U.S. we celebrate Oktoberfest for one reason – Beer (and the food as well). Like every cultural holiday, we need another reason to get drunk. Personally I’m all about the sausage and sauerkraut and watching the polka dances. I will admit I do like to put down a bottle of Becks from time to time. Every year Tempe does their annual Oktoberfest and they do a good job of keeping to some of the traditions. But for the most part, it is just a big beer fest. I had a fun goofy time there wearing my Bavarian hat and eating some good food (as you can tell in these goofy photos of me).

Lentil Soup

  • 1 cup dry lentils
  • 5 cups water
  • 1 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1 cup sliced carrot
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 2 teaspoons instant chicken bouillon granules
  • 2 teaspoons snipped fresh sage or 1/2 teaspoon dried sage, crushed
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 pound fully cooked smoked sausage links, sliced diagonally
  • Snipped fresh parsley

Rinse and drain lentils. In a large saucepan of Dutch oven combine lentils, water, green pepper, carrot, onion, bouillon granules, sage, ground red pepper, and garlic. Bring to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, about 30 minute or till vegetables and lentils are tender. Stir in sausage and heat through. If desired, garnish each serving with parsley. Makes 4 servings.

* – from Soups & Stews by C. Holcomb

I made this soup for a potluck – fun night!

Orzo with Sausage & Vegetables

2 links sausage, casing removed and cut up
1/4 pound fresh asparagus (6 or 7 medium spears)
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 ounces orzo (1/3 cup)

Remove sausage casing and crumble sausage. Trim asparagus and cut into 1-inch pieces. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high. Add sausage and green onion; saute 2 minutes. Add chicken broth and bring to boil. Add orzo. Cook for 6 minutes, stirring often. Add asparagus and cook until orzo is al dente and asparagus is tender, another 2 to 3 minutes.

* – I used zucchini and eggplant in place of the asparagus and spinach & feta chicken sausages. Recipe from azcentral.com