I got this recipe from Brown Eyed Bakers blog aka Chelly This soup is really good and makes a lot so you have plenty to freeze for work day lunchs or a cold rainy day.
I got this recipe recently in a recipe exchange, as a Rachel Ray Recipe, I will post her recipe at the end of this blog post so you can choose between hers or Chelly's recipe. Both look very good.
2 tablespoons butter, divided
1 package sweet Italian sausage, casings removed (i used Al Fresco Sweet Apple Chicken Sausage)
½ large (or 1 medium) onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 carrots, thinly sliced
4 stalks celery, thinly sliced
28 oz. can diced tomatoes (used no salt added)
1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can white cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
64 oz. beef broth (used some veggie and some chicken, both low sodium)
28 oz. can tomato sauce (no salt added)
2 teaspoons dried parsley (I used 1Tablespoon)
1/2 teaspoon dried basil (1/2T itlian seasoning, didnt have any basil)
1 teaspoon salt (omitted)
4 oz. small dry pasta (I used elbow)
1. Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large stockpot over medium high heat, and brown the sausage, crumbling it as it cooks. Once brown, remove sausage from pot with a slotted spoon and discard any grease that remains in the pot.
2. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon of butter in the same pot, and add the onion, garlic, carrot, and celery, and saute over medium heat until vegetables are soft, about 8 minutes. Add sausage back to the pot, add the can of diced tomatoes (do not drain), stir briefly, and simmer for 10 minutes.
3. Stir in the beans, and add the beef broth and tomato sauce. Add in all of the seasonings, stir well, turn the heat to high and bring the soup to a boil. Once it boils, turn down to low heat, cover, and simmer for at least 30 minutes.
4. Add the dry pasta and continue to simmer on low for another 30 minutes. Serve with your favorite bread or crackers.
Pasta e Fagioli ~ Rachel Ray
Yields 6 big servings
2 tablespoons (2 turns around the pan) extra-virgin olive oil
1/8 pound (about 3 slices) pancetta, chopped
2 (4 to 6-inch) sprigs rosemary, left intact
1 (4 to 6-inch) sprig thyme with several sprigs on it, left intact
1 large fresh bay leaf or 2 dried bay leaves
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 small carrot, finely chopped
1 rib celery, finely chopped (I usually omit this as small portions of celery are hard to come by and I don't eat the whole head if I buy it!)
4 large cloves garlic, chopped
Coarse salt and pepper
2 (15 ounce) cans cannellini beans
1 cup canned tomato sauce or canned crushed tomatoes
2 cups water
1 quart chicken stock
1 1/2 cups ditalini
Grated Parmigiano or Romano, for the table
Crusty bread, for mopping
Heat a deep pot over medium high heat and add oil and pancetta. Brown the pancetta bits lightly, and add herb stems, bay leaf, chopped vegetables, and garlic. Season vegetables with salt and pepper. Add beans, tomato sauce, water, and stock to pot and raise heat to high. Bring soup to a rapid boil and add pasta. Reduce heat to medium and cook soup, stirring occasionally, 6 to 8 minutes or until pasta is cooked al dente. Rosemary and thyme leaves will separate from stems as soup cooks. Remove herb stems and bay leaf from soup and place pot on table on a trivet. Let soup rest and begin to cool for a few minutes. Ladle soup into bowls and top with lots of grated cheese. Pass crusty bread for bowl mopping.