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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Winter Minestrone

4 hot or mild Italian sausages
1 lb diced beef
1tsp vegetable oil
2 onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, mince
2 cans(19 oz/540 mL)red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 bay leaves
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 can (28 oz/796 mL)tomatoes, mashed
1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
1-1/2 tsp dried oregano
1-1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 small zucchinis, chopped
1/2 cauliflower, chopped
1 cup small short pasta, (tubetti or macaroni)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
Grated Parmesan cheese


Prick sausages all over. In Dutch oven, heat vegetable oil over medium heat; fry sausages and beef, turning occasionally, until browned, about 10 minutes. Set aside.

Drain off fat. Add onions and garlic; cook, stirring and scraping up brown bits from bottom of pan, until onions are softened, about 5 minutes. Add beans, 6 cups (1.5 L) water and bay leaf; bring to boil, skimming off foam. Cut sausages into bite-size pieces; return to pan along with celery, carrots, tomatoes, basil, oregano, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium; cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

Add zucchini, cauliflower and pasta. Cover and cook until pasta is tender, about 15 minutes, adding more water if soup is too thick. Discard bay leaf. Stir in parsley. Serve with cheese.

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