Easy sausage soup

When making soups it’s more a matter of technique and knowing what to combine and in what order, but some variations are good for seeing what sorts of experiments to try.

Cut one unit of kielbasa or sausage (ideally a cured sausage, such as andouille or whatever) into bite-size medallions. In a soup pot, heat up some olive oil, and add the sausage, and brown it, stirring occasionally (but not so much as to break the fond).

Add a medium diced white or yellow onion and a tablespoon of crushed or minced garlic. Stir, and cook until the onions are softened.

Add a quart of chicken or vegetable broth, and bring to a gentle boil. Add a diced green bell pepper, one can of black beans, one can of diced stewed tomatoes, two bay leaves, the juice of one lime, and salt, pepper, sage, and crushed red pepper flake to taste. I also like a small can of Hatch green chili, if available.

Stir occasionally, and serve when the beans are softened (remember to remove the bay leaves before serving).

The lime juice brightens the flavor and pairs well with the chili spice.

This also works well with chicken, or with crab or shrimp added at the end of cooking.

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