Skip to main content

cranberry bean, sausage and spinach soup


I love cranberry beans and this soup recipe with homemade pork sausage is one of my favorites made with these classic heirloom beans.  First I make a big pot of beans, always flavoring my beans with Mediterranean bay laurel leaves, then I freeze what we don't eat for later.  I get a lot of mileage out of a 16 ounce bag of beans. During the first weeks of our Corona Virus quarantine the bean shelves at our markets were either empty or largely picked over and there's a good reason for that, homemade beans are an easy to prepare, delicious and healthy food.  First you soak them overnight in cool water and in the morning place the beans with the  soaking water in a large pot and add flavorings, like onions, carrots and bay leaves.  Then bring to a boil and simmer until tender -for a few hours, depending on the beans and that's it, so simple, delicious and good for you.
I also add a spoonful of salt to my beans towards the end of cooking and often the beans need extra water as they cook.  I keep my cooking process simple so I make a pot of homemade beans as often as I like.

Ingredients for Cranberry Bean, Sausage and Spinach Soup

2 cups cooked cranberry beans, plus 1/2 cup of bean liquid
1 pound homemade pork sausage
1 yellow onion, diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1&1/2 cups sliced carrots
1 fennel bulb, chopped in small pieces
3 medium red potatoes, peeled and diced
2 teaspoons sea salt or more to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or more to taste
4 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 cups fresh spinach 
freshly squeezed lemon juice, from 1-2 lemons

Brown the sausage over medium high heat in a large heavy soup pot, remove sausage and set aside.  Drain off the fat, discard if you like or add to the pot later.
Heat the olive oil and add onions to the pot, cook for 5 minutes, until soft and translucent.
Add the garlic, stir and cook for 30 seconds, then add the carrots, fennel, potatoes, salt and pepper.
Cook and stir for several minutes then add the white wine, cook for 2-3 minutes.
Add the sausage and the chicken stock, simmer for 30 minutes.
When the veggies are soft add the beans and their liquid, simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Right before serving add the fresh spinach and lemon juice to taste.

Makes enough for 6 servings







Comments

Popular posts from this blog

pear jam with saffron infused honey and cardamom

  Pear Jam with Saffron Infused Honey and Cardamom The summer after high school I worked sorting Bartlett pears at the Scotts Valley Fruit Exchange in Lake County California.  I thought I would never touch or eat another pear again in my life. But, here I am years years later making pear jam in my kitchen with pears, honey and saffron grown in Lake County.  A few weeks ago My husband and I went to visit friends in Kelseyville at their finca, they generously supplied me with the pears from their orchard-Finca Castelero- for my jam.  I will never forget getting up early in the morning and riding my bike across the valley from my cousin's house to work a long hot day sorting pears.  I remember thinking whoever came up with the idea of creating a cooperative to sort, pack and send pears from family farms, including my cousin's family farm on what is now called Hendricks road, to markets all over the country really had a good idea!  I never looked at pears in the grocery store the s

alfajores de tarragon and chives

 well here we are again Christmas 🎄 and covid. This time with a side of alfajores on a fish plate.  Do you have a favorite Christmas cookie or cookies?  As long as the flour, butter, eggs, vanilla and sugar keep flowing- I will be baking Christmas cookies, might even slide over the December 25 cutoff and into January this year. We moved in October.  After a week long getaway to Bandon Dunes, Oregon.  We came back to a new one level, slightly smaller inside and outside new to us home in our same town of Novato.  I think we have electricity gremlins though.  I'm ready to invite my electrician to Christmas dinner since he's here every week.  The latest problem a doorbell chime that almost melted down after continuous buzzing for a day, he's looking for a short in our wiring-don't like the sound of that.  He found it and fixed it, hoorah. We have a ton of unpacked boxes in our new big white garage.  My husband Scott ordered a backyard studio shed for his home office and on

goat cheese, fig and walnut apéro cake

  We're planning a trip to France 🇫🇷  this summer and of course I'm already thinking about the restaurants we will try and the meals, including apéro that we will be enjoying during our visit.  My husband and I are  going to the wedding of a dear friend in the South of France, in Antibes to be precise.  We are staying by the outdoor market which is wonderful, I visited the market a few years ago.  We will be surrounded by bakeries and cheese shops as well as assorted take away food emporiums.  Of course I had to take a small apartment in the middle of the old town which has many outdoor places to sip Rosé🍷  while nibbling on appetizers or apéro as they say in France, which sounds delightful.   I made this savory quick bread or cake inspired by Dorie Greenspan from The NY Times, so we could practice apéro -savoring small bites of thick sliced bread with glasses of crisp cold white wine- before dinner at home in Northern California before our trip this summer to the south of F