Prep 30 mins
Cook 4 hrs
A very flexible recipe - you can cook the beans "from scratch" or use canned beans, use any kind of sausage you want (Jimmy Dean reduced fat works great - it comes in 12 or 14 oz. packages and I use it in place of the 1 lb. called for in the recipe) or substitute ham or turkey, you can add or substitute favorite veggies. This soup freezes well and can be halved or doubled. And it's delicious! To make a lower fat version, use the reduced fat sausage and 1% or skim milk. (The cooking time is for a crock pot - if you use your stove top, cooking time is greatly reduced.)
- 1 cup dried white bean, cooked (or about 2 cups canned white beans)
- 2 cups carrots, cut in small bite-sized pieces
- 1 cup celery, cut in small cross-wise pieces
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled, mashed and cut into very fine pieces
- 1 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes
- 2 cups chicken broth (1 14 oz. can will do)
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 lb sausage, cooked, crumbled and well drained (or the equivalent amount of ham or turkey, cooked if need be, and cut into bite sized pieces)
- 2 cups milk or 2 cups half-and-half cream
- 3 -4 cups kale (don't use the stems) or 3 -4 cups bok choy, rinsed and cut into bite-sized pieces (don't use the stems)
- Mix all ingredients except the milk and the greens in a large heavy pan or crock pot.
- Cook on low for about six hours or on high for four hours. If cooking on the stove top, bring to a boil and then simmer until carrots and celery are tender.
- Add the milk or half-n-half and heat until soup is good and hot again.
- Stir in the greens and heat just until the greens become limp but are still brightly colored.