Tuscan Kale, Bean and Sausage Soup
1 lb Italian sausage (hot or sweet/bulk or links)
1/4 lb Lean ground beef
2 Tbsp Olive oil
1 C Onion- fine diced
1 C Carrot- small diced
3/4 C Celery- small diced
2 Tbsp Spice Union French Chef's Blend
4 C Marinara sauce (home made or your favorite jarred sauce)
2 C Low sodium chicken stock
3 C Tuscan kale- chopped (any kale or Escarole would be fine too)
1/3 C Ditalini pasta (cooked just short of al dente)
1 each 15.5 oz Can of Cannellini beans- drained and rinsed
2 Tbsp Fresh Italian parsley- finely minced
1/3 C Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat your oven to 325°F.
Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with shortening spray.
Remove the sausage meat from the casing and place small bits (about 1/4 teaspoon in size) of sausage on the baking tray. (see image 1)
Place the baking tray in the oven and cook the sausage for 12-15 minutes. This will help render some of the fat from the sausage.
In a large Dutch oven, over medium heat, brown the ground beef in the olive oil until the meat is deeply browned.
Add the onion, carrot and celery to the Dutch oven and stir to combine.
Cook until the onions are translucent.
Add the Spice Union French Chef's Blend to the Dutch oven and stir to combine.
Add the cooked sausage, marinara sauce, chicken stock and kale to the Dutch oven; stir to combine.
Cover the Dutch oven, lower the heat to simmer and allow the stew to cook for 45 minutes.
Add the Ditalini and Cannellini beans to the stew, return the cover and continue to cook for 15 minutes.
Garnish the stew with the Parmesan cheese and parsley. Serve with toasted, crusty bread.