Welcome to this month's Eating the Alphabet Challenge - letters U, V, and W! Say what? - letters U, V, and W?? Mmmm, hmmm ... this month's letters are a tad bit challenging.
When it came time to figure out what I was going to make for this month's challenge, hosted by Brenda of Meal Planning Magic, my mind immediately went to two things --- Vidalia onions and Watermelon. The trouble? ...
... they're both out of season. I mean, I guess I could have gotten one of those little 'personal' watermelons ... you know, the kinda small ones ... that are still in our stores. But it just seemed kind of wrong to be working with watermelon when the blogosphere is full of pumpkin and apple and the-beginnings-of-Christmas stuff.
And then it hit me!
White beans!! 'White' starts with W ... I can use white beans!
So I turned to one of our favorite soups to share with you for this month's Alphabet Challenge. With the temperatures dropping, leaves falling, and even some snow falling in some areas, doesn't warm and comforting soup sound a whole lot better than watermelon? I thought so.
And so I bring you White Bean & Sausage Soup. This soups delivers a delicious combination of white beans, sausage (regular or turkey), celery, tomatoes, and cabbage. And it comes together quickly enough to be a viable weeknight option. Just perfect for those cold winter days we have coming up ... especially when served up with a big ol' hunk of homemade cornbread.
Simmer up a big pot and dig in. It may just become one of your favorites, too.
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White Bean & Sausage Soup
Source: Adapted from Prevention Healthy Cooking: Lose Weight the Smart Low-Carb Way
1 lb. sweet Italian sausage
1 large onion, chopped
3 celery ribs, chopped
4 c. chopped green cabbage
1 (14.5 oz.) can white beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15 oz.) can stewed tomatoes
3 (14.5 oz.) cans chicken broth
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1. Heat a bit of olive oil in a large pot over medium-low heat. Remove sausage from its casings; add to pot and cook until cooked through. Remove cooked sausage to a plate. Drain any drippings from the pot.
2. Put a little more olive oil in the same pot. Over medium heat, stir in chopped onion, celery, and cabbage. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables begin to soften, about 8-10 minutes.
3. Add beans, chicken broth, and tomatoes to the pot. Bring to a boil and immediately lower the heat. Stir in Italian seasoning and bay leaf. Simmer, partially covered, for 30 minutes.
4. Stir in sausage and black pepper; simmer for about 2 minutes to heat through.