Hearty Italian Stew

Nothing says comfort food to me more than a homemade bowl of stew.  And this recipes happens to be one of my new favorites.

I stumbled upon the blog Heather’s Dish a few months back while on the hunt for some new recipes.  I immediately fell in love with her food.  Her photos make you want to jump through the screen and take a bite.  As you scroll through her recipes, each dish looks better than the last.  I am also fond of how Heather always has a story to share with a bubbly, outgoing and funny tone.  Reading her blog puts a smile on her face.  Oh yeah, and her name rocks!  (Not that I am biased or anything).

Truth be told, until I saw this recipe, I had never put cabbage into soup.  I am sure I have eaten soup with cabbage in it before, I just wasn’t aware of it.  Since I happened to have some cabbage left over from my Chinese Chicken Salad, I decided to give it a try.  And I have to say, best idea ever!  Now I want to put cabbage in all my soups :)

Ingredients

1 lb mild Italian chicken sausage (or whatever your favorite meat and flavor may be)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 heaping cup of carrots, diced

1 onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 head of cabbage, core removed and shredded (about 4-5 cups)

2 zucchini, sliced into half moons

1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (I used the Italian flavor)

24 oz vegetable stock

1 15 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 tsp Italian seasoning

2 cups prepared quinoa (I followed the instructions on the package and made mine in the rice cooker)

Preparation

Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat.  Remove the sausage from the casings and brown, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon.  Add in the onion and carrots and stir to combine.  Cover and let cook for about 3-4 minutes.  Add the garlic and stir for 1 minute.  Add the cabbage and zucchini, cover and cook for another 3-4 minutes.  Stir everything to combine, then add the tomatoes, the stock, chickpeas, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and let simmer, covered, for about 20-30 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the quinoa.

To serve add quinoa to the bottom of a big bowl and ladle the soup on top.

Recipe slightly adapted from Heather’s Dish

What I love most about this recipe is that, well, it’s hearty (duh, it’s part of the title).  No, but really…it keeps you sa-tis-fied!  And you got to give props to a soup that will stick with you for hours.

I normally like to enjoy my soup with a side of crusty bread, but the quinoa seems to fulfill my need for a starch.  It does a great job soaking up all the delicious flavors that are melded together in the broth.  Plus, quinoa is an excellent form of protein!

So if happen to be in the mood for a little comfort food, do it up right and fix yourself a pot of this delicious stew.  Your soul, and tummy, will thank you.

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2 thoughts on “Hearty Italian Stew

  1. Looks amazing Heather! Great pic

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