Italian sausage soup: a special version from Tuscany

Italian sausage

Italian sausage soup is a real simple yet delicious meal to prepare for a winter evening and family gatherings.

As for any other kind of soup Italian sausage soup has different variations. You can try cooking Italian sausage following different recipes according to your taste or according to seasonal products.

One thing that my Italian Grandma always does is adding some Mediterranean herbs and spices to the soup to give it a more interesting taste. Some people like to eat their soup with vegetables chunks and pieces of sausage other people like to blend everything and make it a creamy soup and then add sausage afterwards.

I find that the best part of Italian sausage soup is the crispy and fragrant croutons. Traditionally, to make croutons, we use Tuscan bread which has less salt. We simply bake it in preheated oven at about 425°F. for 8/10 minutes then add salt and extra virgin olive oil drizzle to it.

Tuscan bread is perfect to make croutons for Italian sausage soup because the sausage is already very tasty so the fact that it has less salt makes it lighter.

The first Italian sausage soup I’d like to share with you here is:

  • Tomato soup with Italian sausage

Here is what you’ll need:

8/10 tomatoes
3/4 carrots
2/3 potatoes
1 onion
garlic clove
extra virgin olive oil
Italian sausage
rosemary
salt and pepper
Ditalini pasta

Procedure:

  1. Bring water to a boil add tomatoes and let boil for 2/3 minutes.
  2. Rinse tomatoes with cold water so that you can peal them and cut them in big chunks.
  3. Thin slice the onion.
  4. Cut carrots into rounds. Peal and cut potatoes in chunks.
  5. Take off the skin of the sausage and keep only the meat. Set it aside
  6. Pour some extra virgin olive oil in a large, high pot. Add sliced onion and garlic clove and let sauté until lightly golden.
  7. Add sausage and rosemary. Add sausage and let sauté until thoroughly cooked.
  8. Add tomatoes and stir with a wooden spoon, let cook for about 5 minutes. Keep stirring.
  9. Add carrots and potatoes, cover all ingredients with warm water, add salt and pepper and let your soup cook for about 60/70 minutes. If it gets too dry add more warm water.
  10. Bring water to a boil in another pot, add salt and as soon as it boils add Ditalini pasta. Let it cook.
  11. Drain pasta and mix it with the soup.
  12. You can serve this delicious soup with your favorite choice of fresh herbs like marjoram.

Italian sausage recipe

Another Italian sausage recipe that I really enjoy cooking (and eating) is:

  • Italian sausage soup with cabbage

To make this version of Italian sausage soup

you’ll need:

1 half cabbage
extra virgin olive oil
3/4 celery stalks
1 carrot
1 onion
Italian sausage
diced bacon
2 potatoes
bay leaves
salt

Procedure:

  1. Thin slice onions, cut celery, carrots and potatoes in small pieces.
  2. Take out the skin of the sausage and just use the meat.
  3. Cook sausage in a skillet with hot extra virgin olive oil and bay leaves. Make sure you cook it thoroughly.
  4. Set cooked sausage aside and now cook diced bacon then set it aside on a paper towel to absorb excess oil.
  5. Cook all vegetables in a large pot with warm water for about 60/75 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Serve your minestrone with bacon and Italian sausage on top.

Italian sausage soup

These were two different ways of cooking Italian sausage. But the very best is yet to come…

…Exactly because what I am about to share with you today is an Italian sausage soup typical of the region Tuscany.

It is not exactly a soup because it’s not supposed to be real liquid. It’s called Ribollita and it is a traditional Italian recipe and my Grandma has her own version of it with Italian sausage.

The original Ribollita soup doesn’t have sausage, in fact it is a very humble, rural meal that ancient families of peasants used to make to use left over bread and vegetables.

To be authentic a Ribollita must include beans, cabbage and kale, stale bread.

  • Here is Grandma’s Version of Ribollita soup from Tuscany with Italian sausage

You’ll need:

1/2 cabbage
1/2 kale
2 potatoes
2 carrots
1 onion
cherry tomatoes
2-1/2 cups beans
fresh tomato sauce
Tuscan or Ciabatta bread (it has to be two days old-not fresh)
Italian sausage
extra virgin olive oil
salt

Procedure:

  1. First you need to soak beans in water overnight.
  2. In a large pot add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, add beans, stir with a wooden spoon. Add warm water and salt. Let cook for about 60 minutes.
  3. Thin slice onion and cook it until lightly golden in a large pot with some extra virgin olive oil.
  4. Cut cherry tomatoes in halves and add it to the cooked onion. Stir, add a pinch of salt and let cook for a few minutes.
  5. Add potatoes and carrots to the pot. Cut kale and cabbage and add it to the rest of the vegetables. Stir with a wooden spoon.
  6. Add fresh tomato sauce and let cook for a few minutes. Now add warm water and let all vegetables cook thoroughly. Add a little salt to taste and cook until all water is reduced.
  7. When beans are cooked, drain them and add them to the vegetable mixture. Stir all ingredients with a wooden spoon.
  8. Take out the skin of the sausage and just use the meat.
  9. Cook sausage in a skillet with hot extra virgin olive oil. Make sure you cook it thoroughly.
  10. Cut bread in slices and place them on the bottom of a large soup bowl. Pour a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil on top then pour the Ribollita (all cooked vegetables and beans) on top of bread.
  11. Serve with Italian sausage on top.

Grandma always says that if you make Ribollita soup a day ahead it will have a much richer taste!

Try and let me know if you liked it and if you found it easy to make.

  • Bottom line

These were some of my favorite Italian sausage soup recipes. I mostly like the typical Ribollita soup from Tuscany because I love vegetables and beans and I find that the fragrant bread and extra virgin olive oil simply gives it a rustic savor.

Eating Ribollita soup warms your heart, it makes you feel like you are in another time and space like a fairy tale in the woods.

If you’d like to have some more of my Italian Grandma’s recipes from Tuscany, check out my latest book:

Italian Style Recipe – The Book…Coming soon

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