every year there is a day in march where i walk outside, winter coat on, hands in pockets with shoulders scrunched and head down watching out for ice.
i take two or three steps and realize, wait a minute, there isn’t a cold blast of air on my face. my shoulders slowly roll back to their other three season position. i take the hood off and have peripheral vision again. my hands come out of my pockets, i take the gloves off, and i no longer have to use my nose to operate the iphone. it’s finally spring. my friend whitney claims one year i called her on this day and told her that “the birds are chirping! the sun is shining!” today was that day.
i pinned this sausage, spinach, and white bean stew recipe in the dead of january. i waited until today to make it. the good thing is that although it’s a stew, it’s not a very heavy stew. and while the original recipe called for chorizo, i lightened it up with some chicken sausage. you can choose your own adventure.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 lb good quality italian chicken sausage (or turkey sausage, or chorizo)
- 1 large onion, sliced thinly
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
- ¼ cup white wine
- 3 cups cooked great northern white beans (canned is fine, but fresh is better)
- 3 cups chicken stock
- 10 cups spinach
- salt and pepper to taste
- paprika to taste
- In a medium sized dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat. Add sausage, and cook until cooked through, turning occasionally, about 10 minutes. Transfer sausage to plate.
- Add remaining tablespoon olive oil. Turn heat down to medium and add garlic, onions, and thyme. Cook until onions are translucent, then stir in white wine and scrape the pot so nothing sticks to the bottom. Add beans, stock, and a health pinch of salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, slice sausage on the diagonal into 1 inch pieces.
- Once soup has simmered, stir in spinach until it's well wilted. Add sausage back in and mix well.
- Serve in bowls topped with a little paprika.
recipe adapted from February 2013 issue of Bon Appetit Magazine.
recipe rephotographed January 2015.