It’s the week of Christmas. With family coming into town, a million things to do, and the realization that I’m going to be stuffing my face for the next week or so, I wanted to make something comforting but healthy. Something easy and quick, but is going to last for two or so days so I don’t have to think about feeding The Cheese and I on top of all the holiday cooking. This.. was perfect.
This would actually be perfect any time of year. But, it was especially perfect for this week. I used broccoli raab (also known as Rapini) which is actually my FAVORITE vegetable and looks like this:
You can generally find it in any supermarket. It is a fairly bitter green and is therefore skipped over by most. However, it is a good source of Vitamin B, Zinc and Copper, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6, Folate, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Manganese. YAH! It’s really freakin’ good for you. In soup, the bitter flavor is toned down a lot and works so well with the sausage and white beans. I use both the stalks and the leaves/florets. If you can’t find it, or don’t like it you can use any dark green leafy vegetable you prefer.
Okay here we go:
Start by sauteing about 1/2 a medium onion and 3 cloves of garlic in a few tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add a pinch of red pepper flakes, a pinch of salt, a few grounds of black pepper and stir.
Allow the onions to cook for a few minutes until they become translucent. Add about 2 chopped carrots, depending on the size. If you have a giant carrot, maybe just use one. You’ll figure it out.
Let the carrots cook for a minute or two until they begin to soften. Chop 1 package of sausages (about 5 sausages) into 1 inch chunks and add them to the onions and carrots.
Allow the sausages to cook through, mixing every once and a while so the pieces get browned and crusty on both sides. You will start to see brown bits form on the bottom of the pan which is where all the flavor is going to come from.
Do you see all that brown, crispy goodness? Ohhh yeahhhhh.
Next, chop the washed broccoli raab (stalks and all) into 1 inch pieces. Add the stalks to the sausage and vegetables. These will cook faster than you think which is why I add them at the end.
Mix everything together.
To the sausage and vegetables, pour in about 1 cup of white wine. Then help yourself to a little slug from the bottle.. you know.. to make sure it’s not poisonous.
When the wine hits the pan it will begin to sizzle. Using a wooden spoon, begin to scrape up all of the brown bits off the bottom of the pan so that they incorporate into the wine sauce.
Bring the wine to a simmer and allow it to cook for 2 – 3 minutes so that all the alcohol cooks off. Next, add about 4 cups or 1 15 oz container of good chicken stock, 1 tsp Kosher salt and 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper.
Keeping the heat at medium, cover and allow the soup to cook for about 5 – 10 minutes until the stock comes to a boil and the stalks have softened.
To the soup, add 2 cans of drained and rinsed white beans and all the leaves of the broccoli raab.
Stir the beans and greens into the soup until combined. Let the soup cook for another 5 – 10 minutes so that the beans heat through and the greens begin to wilt.
And, that’s it! You’re done! Spoon into a bowl with a sprinkling of Parmesan and enjoy!
- 2 TB olive oil
- 1 cup white onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes
- 2 medium carrots, chopped
- 5 chicken sausages, sliced crosswise into 1 inch pieces
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 4 cups good quality chicken stock
- 2 cans northern white beans, drained and rinsed very well
- 1 bunch broccoli raab, chopped (stalks included)
- Kosher salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- Freshly grated Parmesan for serving
- In a dutch oven or stock pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the onion, garlic, and the pinch of red pepper. Add 1/2 tsp salt and a few cranks of black pepper. Allow the onion and garlic to cook for a few minutes until the onion is soft and translucent.
- Add the carrot and allow to cook for 2 - 3 more minutes until it begins to soften.
- Add the sliced sausages to the vegetables and allow the sausages brown and cook through.
- After the sausage is just cooked through, add the broccoli raab stalks and mix.
- Pour in the wine in order to de-glaze the pot, scraping up all the brown bits. Cook the wine for 3-4 minutes so that the alcohol cooks out.
- Add the chicken stock, 1 tsp Kosher salt and 1/2 tsp black pepper. Cover, and let the soup cook for 5 - 10 minutes until the stock has come to a boil and the stalks have softened.
- Add the beans and broccoli raab leaves and florets and stir.
- Cook for 5 more minutes allowing the beans to heat through and the greens to just wilt.
- Serve with a sprinkling of fresh grated Parmesan.
- You can substitute the broccoli raab (Rapini) for any other preferred dark leafy green.