Cook the Book: Italian Sausage Soup

Italian Sausage Soup

Sometimes I have leftover roasted garlic and I use it in place of the fresh garlic.  If you have an herb garden like I do, then by all means use fresh herbs in place of the dried.

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, cut into 1/2-inch slices (or hot if you want a spicier soup)
2 large onions, diced
9 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried marjoram
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 zucchini, quartered and chopped
1 summer squash, quartered and chopped
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
1 cup red wine
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
4 to 5 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup cream (optional)
2 cups chopped spinach or kale

Heat the olive oil in a medium-sized stockpot over medium-high heat.  Add the sausage and sauté until brown. Add the onions, garlic, salt, pepper and herbs and continue to cook until the onions are translucent.  Add the zucchini and summer squash and cook for another 5 minutes. Add the potatoes, wine, tomatoes, stock and optional cream; simmer for 45 minutes.  Add more stock if needed.  If you are using spinach, add it and cook another minute or two.  If you are using kale, add it and cook for an additional 15 minutes.

Serves 4-6