Italian Sausage and White Bean Soup
This is a nice hearty and meaty bean soup. Generally I use navy beans in this recipe but in Italy I usually make it with Cannellini beans. Diced carrots and celery can also be added once the soup is blended if desired. A nice crisp crostini that has been drizzled with extra virgin olive oil is a great side for the soup.
This handheld Immersion Blender is perfect for transforming a chunky simmering soup into a silky and creamy gem. With this White Bean Soup, I remove and reserve some of the beans before blending, so the final soup has some whole beans in it, but the soup is thick and hearty from the partial blending. The danger when blending hot soups in a traditional blender, is that they can blow the top off the blender and make a big mess and even cause injury. The immersion blender eliminates that danger and the bottom part of the wand is much easier to clean than an entire blender. It’s a win-win!
Italian Sausage and White Bean SoupCourse: SoupsCuisine: ItalianDifficulty: Easy
1 pound dried white beans
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 slice of bacon, small diced
1/2 pound ground Italian pork sausage
1 large onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon ground fennel seed
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 large bay leaf
Small pinch of red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 quart chicken stock
1 quart veal stock (or beef stock)
2 cups of chopped Escarole (1-inch pieces)
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
1/4 cup oil cured olives, pitted (optional)
Crisp croutons or Crostini (optional)
- Rinse beans and pick out any severely discolored beans or debris. Place beans in a bowl and cover with plenty of cold water and refrigerate 6-8 hours or overnight.
- Drain water from beans and rinse. Place beans in large pot and cover with water by about 3-inches. Cook uncovered over medium high heat, stirring occasionally until water begins to boil.
- Turn off the heat, cover the pot and let beans sit for one hour. After one hour, drain beans and set aside.
- Heat a large soup pot over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and bacon. Render fat from bacon, cooking until crispy. Remove bacon from pot and set aside in a bowl.
- Add ground sausage to the pot and cook until browned. Remove sausage from pot and place in bowl with bacon.
- Add chopped onions to the pot and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic to the pot and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add herbs, white wine and vinegar and cook 10 minutes, until liquid is reduced by about half.
- Add the stock and beans and simmer until beans are tender, stirring occasionally. With a slotted spoon, remove about half of the beans and set aside.
- Blend the soup until smooth using an immersion blender.
- Add chopped escarole, reserved beans, sausage and bacon to soup and cook for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Top with oil cured olives and crisp croutons or crostini and serve.