Prep 30 mins
Cook 4 hrs
This recipe takes longer than those opening a box of broth but it is SOOOO much better. Those who eat this tell me it is the best soup they've ever eaten. It's worth the extra step.
- 16 cups chicken broth (made from 10 lbs. chicken legs)
- 1 head celery, diced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 lb Italian sausage, crumbled
- 5 potatoes, cubed (or cooked pasta if you prefer)
- 5 carrots
- 1 lb mushroom
- 2 (8 ounce) bags spinach leaves
- 1 -2 tablespoon salt, to taste (about 2 Tbsp but add slowly and taste)
- pepper, to taste
- 1 cup parmigiano-reggiano cheese, freshly shredded (You may use asiago as well but do not use cheese from a shaker.)
- To make the chicken broth, put 10 pounds of chicken legs in a large pot (bigger than a dutch oven - at least 32 cups). Fill with water. After washing celery, trim and put the trimmings in with the chicken.
- Once chicken is just barely cooked, remove from the pot and pull the chicken off the bone reserving for another use (I make chicken salad with it. Goes great with soup.) Return skin and bones to the pot and allow to cook until the broth tastes very chickeny. At least two to three hours.
- Strain broth of bones.
- At this point, I allow the broth to sit overnight in the fridge and then skim off all fat the next morning. You can skim fat without allowing it to sit, if you prefer.
- In a medium frying pan, sautee garlic in olive oil under it begin turns a tan color but do not allow to burn or get too dark or it will turn bitter. Add sausage and cook until browned.
- Add sausage mixture and all remaining ingredietns to the broth in the soup pot, except potatoes and spinach.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Simmer in the broth until the carrots are just tender enough to easily pierce with a fork, about twenty minutes.
- Add potatoes and cook until tender.
- Remove from heat and add spinach.
- Serve with parmesan or asiago cheese.