Thursday, October 14, 2010

Recipes to Try -- Spinach and Pasta Soup

I have been collecting recipes I'm going to try in all sorts of places -- and I've decided since I've started using this blog as a resource and cookbook of sorts, I think I'll start loading in recipes I want to try (as well as ones I've made)...

This one was in the Washington Post yesterday (October 13) food section.  It's a soup (which I was, at one point committed to making more of) and it's quick and it looks like a way to sneak some spinach into those tiny mouths I'm in charge of feeding....we'll see.  They are pretty observant.

Spinach and Pasta Soup
1 lb. turkey or chicken sausage, without casings
1 medium onion
1 or 2 large cloves garlic
28 ounces canned whole peeled tomatoes, drained
4 c. water
4 c. no salt added chicken broth, such as Kitchen Basics brand
8 oz. baby spinach leaves
15 oz. (1 can) no salt added cannellini beans (such as Eden brand)
Kosher salt
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Mini bow tie pasta

Pinch pieces of the sausage and place in a stockpot over medium-high heat.  Cook the sausage, stirring to break up large clumps, until the exterior is no longer pink(it need not be fully cooked through at this point).

Cut the onion into small dice to yield 1 cup.  Mince the garlic (to taste). Coarsely chop the tomatoes, reserving their juices.

Add the onion and garlic to the pot; cook for 4 minutes, stirring a few times, until just softened, then add the tomatoes and their juices.

Stir in 2 c. of the water and the 4 c. broth. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, then add the pasta and cook for 3 minutes; it will still be firm.

Rinse, then coarsely chop the spinach. Drain and rinse the beans.

Add the remaining 2 c. water, the spinach and the beans to the pot.  Stir, then cover and cook for 5 to 8 minutes; the spinach should be tender, the pasta should be al dente and the sausage will be cooked through.  Season wtih salt to taste (keepin in mind that cheese might be added)

Divide among individual wide shallow bowls; sprinkle with the freshly grated cheese, if desired.  Serve hot.

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