February 1, 2013

Winter..His Heart....My Soup

It's probably safe to say that it's rather cold where you are right now. Texas weather has ranged from flip-flop sunny days, to wintery bleak days below freezing. Atlanta and Pensacola have been very, very cold this past week and our friends in Maine have said it was -9 degrees with 24 inches of snow. Snuggle up babies! 

2 teaspoons olive oil
1 1/2 pounds Italian sausage, mix of hot and sweet
2 yellow onions, chopped
5 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2  tablespoons tomato paste
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
2 bay leaves
2 (32-ounce) packages chicken stock
8 ounces fusilli pasta
1/2 cup, fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
The Cheese
8 ounces ricotta
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch of freshly ground pepper
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
In a large pot or dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add sausage (removing from casing, if in links) and break into bite-sized pieces. Brown for about 5 minutes. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions soften and begin to turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook for about a minute, then add tomato paste, and stir well to incorporate. Cook until tomato paste begins to brown, about 3 or 4 minutes.
Add tomatoes, dried bay leaves, and chicken stock, and stir well to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered, about 30 minutes. Add uncooked pasta directly to soup and cook until al dente, about a minute less than package directions (remember that pasta will continue to cook a bit in the soup after you remove it from heat). Don’t let the soup continue to simmer or cook, or the pasta will become overcooked. Stir in fresh basil, and adjust salt and pepper, to taste.

In a bowl, combine ricotta, Parmesan, salt, and pepper. Mix well.

Let Me Serve You.....
Scoop a dollop of the cheese mixture  into an empty soup bowl. Sprinkle with a bit of shredded mozzarella. Ladle hot soup over ricotta mixture, and finish with another light sprinkle of mozzarella, as well as some more chopped basil, to garnish. Serve immediately with hot French bread!!

No comments:

Post a Comment

I so love receiving your thoughts and comments. I also hope you found something that made you smile.