Pasta e Fagioli with Sausage*
1 T. olive oil
1.5 pounds sweet or hot bulk Italian sausage
1 large carrot, finely chopped
2 to 3 ribs celery, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
3 to 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
1 t. dried Italian seasoning blend
salt and pepper
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth (trust me on this, you'll get plenty of salt later!)
one 15 oz. can cannellini beans
½ cup small pasta, such as ditalini (I used macaroni..it's what I had..worked fine)
grated parmesan cheese for serving
In soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Crumble the sausage and cook, stirring until browned. Add the carrot, celery, onion, garlic, bay leaf and dried seasoning; season with salt and pepper. (I used 1t. salt and ½ t. pepper.) Cook until vegetables are softened.
Add the chicken broth, beans and 2 cups water, cover the pot and bring soup to boil over high heat. Stir in the pasta, lower the heat and simmer to al dente. Discard the bay leaf.
Serve soup with a drizzle of olive oil and lots of cheese. Serve with crusty bread.
*originally published 3/2/2009