Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Sausage, Bean, and Spinach Stew

Becca here with a great hearty stew.  It's early Spring in Arkansas here, meaning that some days are really warm, but we still get a few really chilly, damp days from time to time.  I fixed this stew on one of those brisk days, and it was a winner in my book - fairly inexpensive, quick, healthy, and tasty.  With the Italian Sausage and spinach, it reminded me a bit of another of our favorite soups, Tuscan Soup, but the addition of beans and subtraction of milk makes it different also.  My inspiration recipe, that I deviated from quite a bit, was from a Rachael Ray magazine our Grandma had passed on to me after she had read it.  She suggested squeezing fresh lemon juice in at the end, just before serving, which I'm sure would be good, but I didn't try. 

Sausage, Bean, and Spinach Stew

1 pound dried great northern beans
8 cups chicken broth or stock (I use homemade usually :)
1 onion, peeled & diced (I used purple)
2 carrots, diced (I didn't peel, just coined them)
2 ribs of celery, diced
8 cloves of garlic, diced if you prefer
20 ounces of Italian Sausage, already cooked (I browned in a skillet)
16 ounces of raw spinach leaves

Combine all ingredients, except spinach, in a large slow cooker (mine is 6 quart).  Cook on high about 3 1/2 hours, or until beans are tender.  Just before serving, stir in raw spinach leaves, cover, and let stand until the spinach wilts, about 10 minutes.

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