Monday, December 10, 2012

White Bean Soup

"Let Omar sing of wine and bread, but I prefer fine soup instead."
You would think a chest-rattling cold would keep me in bed, but two things compelled me to move to the kitchen: guilt and economy.
It's been 13 months since my last blog post. Save for the readers still loyal enough to bitch me out at every possible turn, I was good with that. But seriously, I've missed writing, and more specifically cooking for the simple joy of being in the kitchen. I always knew I would eventually run out of excuses and get back to my pots and pans and that pretty blue flame. I think I've finally arrived.
And what of economy? Well I had some Italian sausage in the refrigerator that was gonna go bad if I didn't cook it soon, and I hate, HATE throwing food away. So, convinced my skull was going to crack open with every sneeze and cough, I willed myself to the stove for some homemade comfort & joy.
White Bean Soup - a Blog.O.Food original
  • 1 16-oz bag dried cannellini beans, sorted and soaked overnight
  • 1 ½ lb sweet Italian sausage (removed from casing)
  • 1 ½ cups yellow onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp red pepper flake
  • Salt & pepper to taste
Sort and clean beans before soaking overnight in plenty of cold water. The next day, rinse beans, discarding any loose skins or beans that float. Add to a large stock pot and fill with cold water at least 2" above the beans. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a low simmer and cook for an hour (longer is beans are not fresh), checking water level and stirring occasionally. Once beans are nearly soft add salt to taste, do not salt beans before cooking. Remove beans from heat and keep covered.
Meanwhile, give your onions a small chop and add to the oil heated in a large skillet. Cook until the onions begin to wilt and turn translucent. Add the minced garlic and cook for two minutes more.
Add the sausage, breaking up with a wooden spoon and cook through, just until no longer pink. You can temper the pork and onions with a ladle or two of the bean water and allow to reduce down. Taste for seasoning. Here's is where I add the red pepper flake Finally, transfer the meat mixture to your pot of beans and stir to combine, and re-heat over a low flame.
I felt better after the first spoonful. Too easy, so delicious. The red pepper flake aren't absolutely essential, but I had to clean out my sinuses one way or another, and I never take cold medicine. So it that or pipe cleaners.
Returning to the blog has been a long time in coming. But I'm finally excited to be back. Thanks for your patience and continued support.
Thanks for taking the time - Blog O. Food

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