(Recipe can be found on the site Snixy Kitchen here.)
Step by Step Instructions:
Yeah, there are a lot of ingredients shown above, but it is SO worth it for this soup. Here’s what you’ll need: Fresh spinach, jarred Pesto, Chicken Broth (at least 6 cups), your favorite bite-sized pasta (I went with Galletti and the recipe calls for Orrechietti), White Wine for cooking, Dried Thyme, Bay Leaves, 2 cans of diced tomatoes, 1 can of kidney beans, 1 can of cannellini beans, Tomato Paste, Parmesan Cheese, 1 medium-sized yellow or white Onion, about 2 Italian sausages (or improvise like I did and use turkey sausage…you just need something in a casing), 3 Celery Stalks, 2 Carrots, 4 small Red Potatoes, and 4 cloves of Garlic.
I began with my prep work. First off, I chopped up one medium-sized white onion. I also started to get a large pot of water boiling for the pasta.
Next up I cut up the red potatoes into small pieces. I got about 48 pieces from each potato.
The beans were next. I drained and rinsed both the cans of kidney beans and cannellini beans and set the colander aside until I was ready for them.
Then the celery and carrots and garlic cloves were chopped into small pieces and put in a food processor. Welcome to making your life super easier, my friends! Plus this allows these veggies to be in every bite of the soup. Yum!
Here they are after running the food processor for a short time.
Now it’s time to cook! I started by removing the casing from 2 sausages and began browning them in a large pot over medium-low heat. You’ll want them to be in small pieces but not too small. Just a note: I used spicy turkey sausage and I think it really enhanced the soup’s flavor but the end result is not an overpowering spiciness. It was very subtle.
Then it was time for the pasta to be cooked. Just cook it according to the package’s instructions.
Here is the sausage nicely browned.
Next up add the onions, red potatoes, chopped celery, carrots, & garlic and 3/4 teaspoon of dried thyme.
Then combine the mixture and cook, stirring regularly for about 8 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften.
Then push the veggies to the side so you have cleared some space on the bottom of the pan and add 2 1/2 tablespoons of tomato paste. Stir the tomato paste until it starts to cook for 1-2 minutes.
Then stir the mixture until the tomato paste is combined.
Now both cans of the tomatoes are added along with 6 cups of broth, 1 bay leaf, 1 tablespoon of salt, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of pepper.
Stir it all together and cook it over medium-low heat for 30 minutes…
…until it looks like this. Go ahead and remove the bay leaf at this point and discard it. You can do all of this ahead of time (aside from cook the pasta and drain the beans) if you would like to prepare the broth in advance.
Now it’s time to put it all together. Add the cooked pasta and the rinsed and drained beans, and heat the soup through. You can add more broth at this point if it’s too thick.
Next pile 3 big handfuls of fresh spinach on the soup and carefully stir it in. It’s so cool to see the spinach start to wilt! (Yes, I’m a food dork…well aware!)
Then add 2 tablespoons of pesto and 1/2 cup of dry white wine. Go ahead and taste it to see if it needs more salt and pepper. Then it’s time to EAT! I took up the soup and topped it with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. It was absolutely killer! I am so happy I have a huge amount of leftovers. Delish!
Sausage & Vegetable Minestrone Soup
6 ounces italian sausage (about 2 medium sausages, casings removed)
1 medium yellow onion, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, diced (I pulsed the carrots, celery, and garlic in a food processor together until diced)
3 stalks diced celery, diced
4 cloves garlic, diced
¾ teaspoon dried thyme
3-4 small red potatoes, chopped into ¼”- ½” pieces
Two 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes
2½ tablespoons tomato paste
ups chicken broth
1 bay leaf
15 ounce can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
15 ounce cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2½ cups orecchiette pasta, cooked al dente
3 handfuls fresh spinach leaves
½ cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons fresh store-bought pesto
About 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
Kosher salt and pepper
Optional: Sour batard, sliced and toasted for serving
1. Add the sausage to a large heavy bottom pot, and cook over medium-low heat until lightly browned, stirring occasionally, but leaving the sausage in small chunks.
2. Add the onions, carrots, celery, garlic, potatoes, and thyme and cook, stirring occasionally, over medium-high heat until the vegetables begin to soften, about 8 minutes.
3. Push vegetables to the side of the pot and add tomato paste to the cleared area. Cook the tomato paste, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir to combine the tomato paste with the vegetables in the pot.
4. Add the canned tomatoes, 6 cups of chicken broth, bay leaf, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1½ teaspoons pepper.
5. Cook on medium-low uncovered for about 30 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.
6. Discard the bay leaf. You can make this part of the soup in advance and refrigerate it or freeze it after this step.
7. When you’re ready to serve, add the beans and cooked pasta to the soup and heat through. If the soup is too thick, add some more chicken broth.
8. Add the spinach, stirring to combine, and cook until the leaves wilt.
9. Add the white wine and pesto, and stir to combine. Add more salt and pepper to taste.
10. Serve with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese and a side of sour batard toast.