This rustic and hearty soup is substantial enough to serve as a main course. The sausage and seasonings add a lot of flavor, while big chunks of potato make for a satisfying meal. Pair with a crisp, green side salad and dinner is served!
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 3-7 hours
4 oz. pancetta, cubed
2 lbs. bulk mild sausage
2 15-oz. cans cannellini beans*
6-7 c. chicken stock, divided
1 T. crushed red pepper flakes
2-3 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
2 lbs. Russet potatoes, peeled and cut into small chunks
3” hard Parmesan cheese rind
Salt and black pepper, to taste
½ c. half and half, tempered**
3 c. fresh kale, finely chopped
½ c. Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
For less salt, drain and rinse both cans of cannellini beans before pureeing one can with a little water.
Temper the half and half by adding a little bit of the hot liquid to it before stirring it into the slow cooker crock.
1. Brown pancetta in large skillet over medium-high heat for 2 or 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add sausage to the same skillet and brown, breaking it up into small bite-sized chunks with a spatula while it cooks. Remove from heat and carefully drain excess fat from pan. Transfer pancetta and sausage to a 5 or 6-quart slow cooker crock.
2. Puree one can of cannellini beans (undrained) in a blender or food processor. Drain and rinse the other can of cannellini beans and add the puree and whole beans to slow cooker crock.
3. Add 6 cups chicken stock, red pepper flakes, chopped onion, potatoes, and Parmesan cheese rind to crock and stir to combine. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste.
4. Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-7. Remove lid and add tempered half and half, kale, freshly grated Parmesan cheese and remaining chicken stock, if necessary, to achieve the desired consistency. Stir to combine and allow 5-10 minutes for kale to soften before serving.
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