Italian Wedding soup is perfect for fall evenings

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More soup this week because it’s fall. About this time of year we all start thinking about the holidays to come: Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Not sure what any of those holidays will look like this year. Although I guess Halloween is canceled in College Hill. I breathed a big sigh of relief when I read that news from the neighborhood association. It feels like the responsible thing to do this year. So what will everyone do on Halloween night? Perhaps gather in very small groups? One friend suggested a candy hunt – similar to an Easter Egg hunt. That seemed like a fun idea.

This week’s recipe is a quick version of Italian Wedding soup. This recipe usually has meatballs in it, and sometimes a small pasta, too, which you could easily add. I found inspiration for this soup on Instagram. It was a list of ingredients, and I thought – I have most everything I need to whip up a batch of that. So I did, and it was delightful. We ended up having an impromptu patio dinner with some friends and their kiddos.

Fall and winter are awesome for batch cooking. As the days get shorter, it’s so nice to have leftovers in the fridge to reheat and save a bit of evening time. Especially while this nice crisp fall weather lasts. I love a fall evening stroll, and I’m not alone. The streets of College Hill are alive with cute families walking, riding bikes and enjoying October.

Italian Wedding Soup

2 – 2.5 pounds bulk Italian sausage

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

8 cups chicken stock, homemade is preferable

1 cup shredded carrots

2 cups kale, chopped

1, 28 ounce can diced tomatoes, drained

2 teaspoons Italian seasoning

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (or less if desired)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

¼ cup heavy cream

Parmesan cheese, grated for serving

Method

In a large stock pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, brown the sausage until cooked completely through. Break up sausage pieces up with a wooden spatula while it cooks. Remove sausage from pan, and set aside.

Add olive oil to pot and add chopped onion. Cook for a few minutes, until translucent. Add garlic and cook until fragrant and softened. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil. Then add shredded carrots, kale, diced tomatoes, Italian seasoning, crushed red pepper, kosher salt and heavy cream. Cook until carrots and kale are soft and flavors are incorporated, about 10 minutes. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese on top and with a slice of good bread.

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