Leftovers make the perfect ingredients for a soup. I didn't use all the Italian sausages when I made pizza a few weekends ago so I tossed them in the freezer. I decided on Zuppa Toscana because it's always been on my to-do list and I've never tried it before so I thought why not.
All the recipes I found online were very similar so I mixed a little bit of this and that and added my own preferences. Before I started searching for a recipe, I had in my mind that white beans belonged in this soup so I bought a can. But every recipe I've looked at so far uses potatoes! I used the beans anyway and left out the potatoes. A lot of recipes also have kale or other greens I'm not familiar with, but I'm not a fan of kale so I went with something I knew I would love: spinach.
- 3 sweet Italian sausages (Trader Joe's)
- 1 slice thick-cut bacon
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 15-oz can cannellini beans
- 5 cups water
- 5 oz frozen spinach, thawed
- 1/2 cup milk
1. Take the sausages out of their casing and place in saucepan over medium heat. Crumble up the sausages and cook until no longer pink. Drain and set aside.
2. In the same saucepan, cook bacon slice until crispy. Drain and set aside. Leave a little bit of the bacon drippings in the saucepan.
3. Cook onions and garlic in the same saucepan until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Pour in the water and the bacon. Bring to a boil and reduce heat.
4. Pour in cannellini beans, cooked sausage crumbles, and milk and let it simmer until heated through.
5. Add the thawed spinach and heat through again. Take off heat and serve.
The meatiest soup I've ever eaten in a while. Thank goodness I didn't season anything as I cooked or else it would have been way too salty to eat. With the bacon and the sausages, it was the perfect balance -- neither salty nor bland. I didn't really notice the milk in there. It's probably because I didn't put much, but I might leave it out altogether next time. Heavy cream will just make is too fat-laden for me.