The weather is starting to turn so time for bowls of hearty belly warming soup. This one uses some collards, tomatoes , parsley and basil from the end of my garden.
2 cups dried chick peas, soaked in water overnight and then cooked for about an hour (alternatively use 2 cans (14 to 15 ounces, drained and rinsed)
2 medium carrots, coarsely chopped
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
4 cloves garlic
3 Italian sausages (hot or mild) casings removed (about 12 ounces)
2 Tbl olive oil
2 medium fresh tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 tsp fennel seed
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
8 cups chicken broth
5 cups baby spinach leaves
5 cups chopped collard greens which have been braised in water for 8 to 10 minutes
10 large fresh basil leaves, finely sliced
3/4 cup chopped flay leaf parsley
Salt and pepper for re seasoning if necessary
Place the carrots, celery, onion, garlic and Italian sausage in the bowl of a food processor and pulse about 15 to 20 times until the mixture resembles a coarse paste.
heat the oil in a large soup pot and add the processed mixture, the fennel seed, crushed red pepper, salt and black pepper.
Cook, stirring frequently until the sausage loses its pink color and you can see the onions softening.
Add the tomatoes and continue to cook until the tomato seems to disintegrate into the mixture.
Add the chicken broth, bring back to the boil and simmer 10 to 15 minutes.
Stir in the collards and spinach and continue to cook until the spinach wilts.
Stir in the parsley and basil and re season with the s&p if necessary.