Sunday, January 26, 2014

Italian Soup with Pasta & Chickpeas

Oh merciful heavens we are cold!!! We are cold, cold, cold out here on the east coast! Unbelievably cold, chilled to the bone, just can't seem to get warm even in front of the get the idea, right? So, this is beyond "yay, it's cold, time for soup" weather. This is "soup is the only plausible thing I can imagine eating right now" weather. And so, here we go....another soup recipe on my blog. But, you know what, I'm okay with that because I'm a crazy soup lover - for so many reasons!!! Yes, it'll warm you up from head to toes on polar-vortex days like today......and yes, it was silly-easy to make....but, most importantly, it was crazy-good!!!! Like lick the bowl clean good. Really.

This recipe comes straight from the magazine Vegetarian Times. BUT!!!! I DID use Italian turkey sausage in it!!! Sorry, I can't lie (please don't mention this to the good people at Vegetarian Times or they might cancel my subscription). And if you happen to not be vegetarian, I strongly suggest you try adding those two links of sausage. It added an incredible depth of flavor to the soup!!!!  Enjoy this with a warm chunk of good, crusty bread.
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • <Wooden Spoon's own addition of 2 Italian sausages, I used turkey- you could also use chicken. I think it is important to use an Italian flavor, though>
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (1½ cups)
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced (2 tsp.)
  • 3 plum or Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped (2 cups) <I went the lazy route and used a 15oz can of diced tomatoes>
  • 1 15-oz. can chickpeas, rinsed and drained, or 1½ cups cooked chickpeas
  • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
  • ½ cup ditalini or tubetti
  • ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 Tbs. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbs. finely chopped fresh basil or parsley, for garnish
1. Heat oil in large soup pot or 
Dutch oven over medium heat. <If using turkey and add to oil. Using a spatula (or a handy-dandy mix & chop) chop ground sausage until it is cooked and in tiny pieces> Add 
onion and rosemary sprigs, and sauté 
5 to 7 minutes, or until onion has softened.
2. Add garlic, and sauté 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, and season with salt, 
if desired. Sauté 3 to 5 minutes. Remove rosemary sprigs.
3. Add chickpeas, and slightly 
mash with fork or potato masher to thicken soup.
4. Add broth, and bring to a boil. 
Add pasta, and cook 1 minute less than package directions suggest.
5. Season soup with salt, if desired, 
and pepper. Garnish each serving with 
1 Tbs. Parmesan and 1 tsp. basil.

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