Soup Recipes: Warm up with these soups, stews, chowders, and chilis

Winter has arrived in earnest; it's the long, bitter, double-up-on-socks cold of January and February. These are the months for soup, and Stir It Up! has the perfect collection of soup, stew, chowder, and chili recipes.

Italian white bean sausage and kale stew

Beyond the Peel
This is a simple stew that can do many jobs. Serve it with some crusty bread for lunch or dinner, or even breakfast with a poached egg on top.

By France Morissette and Joshua SpragueBeyond the Peel

2 onions, sliced
3 garlic cloves minced
4 sausages (hot or mild Italian), about 1 pound, turkey or pork
3 cups cooked white beans
3 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1 bunch of Swiss chard or kale (spinach works, too)
Salt and pepper to taste
Fresh thyme to garnish

1. In a large skillet, over medium high heat, sauté onions with olive oil for 3 minutes or until tender. Meanwhile slice the sausages into 1/2-inch pieces. Add the garlic and the sausage meat to the pan and cook until the sausage meat is almost cooked through. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the beans, stock and thyme. Cook for 15 minutes.

2. Using the back of a spoon or a potato masher, mash some of the white beans (leave some whole) to thicken the stock. Season with salt and pepper to taste. This will depend on the stock you used and the flavor of the sausage. Clean the chard and chop into 1 inch strips (if you’re using kale, remove the tough spine). Add the chard to the pot and cook until wilted (about two to five minutes). Serve as is, or with crusty bread, a poached egg or a dollop of sour cream.

3. My favorite supper for breakfast: Serve over a crusty toast with a poached egg on top. Adding only enough liquid to the bowl to soften the bread.

Variations:

-Reduce stock to 2 cups and add 4 cups of chopped fresh tomatoes (or one 796 ml can).

-Add 1/4 cup of sour cream to the sauce for a creamy treat.

-Substitute shredded leftover roasted chicken meat for the sausage for a healthier and lighter meal

-Change the bean to black eyed peas or lima beans for a different flavor and texture.

-Add 2 cups of sliced zucchini

-Substitute chorizo sausage and add two chilies in Adobo sauce. Add 4 cups of chopped fresh tomatoes and 2 tablespoons of tomato paste at the same time as the beans for a “chili” on the fly. This is also a great way of making leftovers look like a completely different meal.

Click here to read the full Stir It Up! blog post

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