Italian Sausage and Pasta Soup
James Carrier
Yields Makes about 5 1/2 quarts; 10 to 12 servings

This top-rated pasta soup features Italian sausage, chopped veggies, canned diced tomatoes, and cannellini beans.  Serve with crusty bread for a hearty meal.

How to Make It

Step 1
1

Squeeze sausages from casings into an 8- to 10-quart pan over high heat and stir often, breaking them apart with a spoon, until browned and crumbly, 8 to 10 minutes. Spoon out and discard all but 1 tablespoon fat from pan.

Step 2
2

Add carrots, onion, and garlic; stir often until onion is limp, 5 to 7 minutes. Add broth, tomatoes (including juice), beans, and basil and bring to a boil.

Step 3
3

Add pasta, reduce heat, and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until pasta is just tender to bite, about 10 minutes. Skim and discard fat. Stir in spinach and cook just until it is wilted, about 30 seconds. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve soup from the pan, or pour into a tureen. Offer parmesan cheese to add to taste.

Ingredients

 2 pounds hot or mild Italian sausages
 3 carrots (12 oz. total), peeled and chopped
 1 onion (12 oz.), peeled and chopped
 4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
 3 quarts fat-skimmed chicken broth
 2 cans (14 1/2 oz. each) diced tomatoes
 2 cans (15 oz. each) cannellini (white) beans, rinsed and drained
 1 tablespoon dried basil
 2 cups dried large shell-shaped pasta
 4 quarts spinach leaves (about 12 oz.), rinsed
  Salt and pepper
  About 1 cup grated parmesan cheese

Directions

Step 1
1

Squeeze sausages from casings into an 8- to 10-quart pan over high heat and stir often, breaking them apart with a spoon, until browned and crumbly, 8 to 10 minutes. Spoon out and discard all but 1 tablespoon fat from pan.

Step 2
2

Add carrots, onion, and garlic; stir often until onion is limp, 5 to 7 minutes. Add broth, tomatoes (including juice), beans, and basil and bring to a boil.

Step 3
3

Add pasta, reduce heat, and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until pasta is just tender to bite, about 10 minutes. Skim and discard fat. Stir in spinach and cook just until it is wilted, about 30 seconds. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve soup from the pan, or pour into a tureen. Offer parmesan cheese to add to taste.

Italian Sausage and Pasta Soup