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A hearty and healthy soup with spicy sausage, kale and fresh tomatoes. 

Pinterest has been inspiring some great ideas lately, and it has also been contributing to a big soup craving. I love a good soup, especially on brisk evenings when fall is just beginning, or on dark winter nights when you need something yummy and filling to warm you up.

Chicken sausage, when combined with hearty beans, leafy kale, heirloom tomatoes and some spice is just the perfect combination. The soup is simmering on the stove, Jack Johnson is playing in the background, and I’m enjoying a nice cup of hot tea, loving this autumn evening with my family.

Spicy Sausage & Vegetable Soup

Serves 5, takes about 75 minutes to make

Ingredients

½ white, yellow or sweet onion, chopped
2 large spicy Italian sausage links
4 garlic cloves, minced
7 crimini mushrooms, sliced
1 carrot, peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thin
½ red bell pepper, chopped
1 15-oz can white beans
2 14-oz cans of chicken broth
¼ tsp dried oregano, crushed
¼ tsp dried thyme, crushed
1 tsp Italian seasoning, crushed
½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil
½ tbsp basil olive oil (or regular evoo)
½ pint baby heirloom tomatoes, quartered
1/2 bunch of kale (aprox 4 cups), removed from stem & torn into bite-size pieces
Salt and pepper, to taste
½ packet of spicy red pepper (~1/2 tbsp), optional
2 tbsp parmesan cheese, plus some for garnish (optional)
Fresh parsley and basil, for garnish

Directions

Heat a large, deep pan over medium heat with a bit of olive oil. Remove the chicken sausage from its casing and add to the pan. Use a rubber spatula to break the sausage into pieces.

Chop your vegetables while the sausage is cooking. To the pan, add carrot, onion, and garlic. Saute the mixture until the onion is almost transluscent. Then, add the red bell pepper, tomatoes and mushrooms. Mix to combine.

Cover and cook for about 10 minutes. Next, add the various spices along with a cup of broth. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Then add the drained beans and the rest of the broth. Simmer for 20 minutes. Just before serving, add the kale. Serve with parmesan, basil and parsley.

Enjoy!

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