Sausage, Bean, and Kale Soup

I am totally kidding, of course you can have some soup. But sadly the internet has not come far enough to have me send it via the world wide web, so you’ll have to get off your couch and make it yourself. Tear yourself away from “Dancing with the Stars” and get crackin’ on our latest endeavor:

Sausage, Bean, and Kale Soup with a side of Beer Bread. Ta-Da!!

Lauren and I frantically threw this masterpiece after a long, hard day at the office and it took us a mere 30 minutes! So if you’re ready to belt out another excuse about how you’re just too darn tired to make dinner for your starving children, then you are talking to the wrong lady.

Soup is the perfect dinner for many reasons. It is a fast and easy way to get yourself a lot of nutrients with not that many calories, which is important for those of us who plan on being on the cover of Victoria’s Secret. You can make soup with almost anything, as long as you have an iota of creativity inside your thick skull.

Here are the ingredients we settled on in the car on the way to the grocery store:
1 lb spicy Italian sausage
2 T minced garlic
1/2 onion, diced
1 small head cauliflower, cut into smaller florets
1/3 c your favorite beer (drink the rest)
4-6 c chicken stock (enough to cover the ingredients by 1 inch)
1 small bunch kale
1 can garbanzo beans
1 can cannellini beans
S + P to taste
Parmesan cheese

Heat a large pot over medium high heat and add the sausage in little bits. We got ours in a “log” instead of links, but if you have the latter just remove the casing and crumble it into the pan.

Once it is browned and mostly cooked, about 5 minutes, remove from pan with slotted spoon onto paper towels to drain.

You should leave the delicious fat in the pan on medium heat.

Add your onion and saute for a few minutes, until translucent.

Add the garlic and saute until fragrant. Add the cauliflower.

Saute for about 5 minutes. While that is cooking, rip the kale off the ribs and into bite-size pieces; rinse thoroughly.

Once the cauliflower starts to “sweat” add the beer to deglaze the pan. Scrape the bottom to loosen any tasty bits off the pan.

Once the beer cooks off a bit, add the stock so you cover the cauliflower by about 1 inch.

Bring to a simmer and let cook until the cauliflower is tender, about 10 minutes. While I was soup-ing away, Lauren was hard at work on the beer breads:

She made three different kinds (what a trooper!): Pyramid Apricot Ale, some weird alcoholic “Cola” from the South (don’t ask, we felt inspired while standing in the beer aisle at Safeway), and Modelo. All were amazing and divine, but I particularly liked the Modelo. It went very well with the soup!

Speaking of soup…

Once the cauliflower is tender you’re ready to rock out. Rinse the beans and add about half of each can to the pot.

Grab your immersion blender and go to town:

Depending on your preference you can go smooth as honey or chunky like cottage cheese thighs. Ew.

Turn the heat back on, add the kale and rest of the beans, and let it cook for a few more minutes. Once the kale has softened a bit and the beans are heated through you can add the sausage and turn off the heat.

Grab your warm bread and slather with some butter while your associate dusts some grated Parmesan on top of your soup. Voila!

Easy, breezy, beautiful… soup!

Original combination:
Sausage, kale, cauliflower, white/garbanzo beans

Variations:
Pancetta, spinach, sweet potato, white beans
Sweet sausage, collard greens, butternut squash/carrot, orzo

Talk to your stomach and find out what it wants!
Nomminess.

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