This dish is so easy: Just brown your favorite smoked sausage, toss the ingredients together, and let the slow cooker do the rest. All you need to round out the meal is a simple green salad and loaf of crusty bread.
1 pound smoked sausage
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 (48-oz.) container reduced-sodium chicken broth
3 cups dried great Northern beans
2 cups chopped yellow onion
3/4 cup chopped carrot
1/2 cup chopped celery
10 garlic cloves, sliced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 Parmesan cheese rind
1 fresh rosemary sprig
Garnishes: chopped fresh parsley, Parmesan cheese
How to Make It
Cut sausage into 2-inch pieces, and halve sausage pieces lengthwise, cutting to but not through other side. Cook half of sausage in 1 Tbsp. hot oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat 2 minutes on each side or until browned. Transfer sausage and drippings to a 7-qt. slow cooker. Repeat with remaining sausage and oil.
Add 1 cup broth to skillet, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring to loosen browned bits from bottom of skillet. Boil 1 minute or until reduced by half. Stir beans, next 8 ingredients, boiled broth mixture, 3 cups water, and remaining broth into slow cooker. Cover and cook on HIGH 7 hours or until beans are tender. Discard cheese rind.
Stir mixture with rosemary sprig 30 seconds to 1 minute; discard rosemary. Remove 1 cup beans, and process in a blender 1 to 2 minutes or until smooth. Stir pureed bean mixture into slow cooker. (Repeat procedure with 1 more cup beans, if a thicker consistency is desired.) Serve immediately.
I have an original crock pot- what is listed here would not fit. I used a 1lb bag of beans, which is only 2C, and could only get 2C of water, not 3 in the pot. 1st time I made it I just threw in the Parmesan rind, which dissolved into unappetizing mushy chunks. Next time I made it I wrapped the rind in cheese cloth which I could then pull out at the end, We thought it was delicious.
Liked convenience of cooking in crock pot but too salty and too much garlic for my taste. I thickened the stew as recommended but also added a mashed potato to absorb some of the salt and cooked a couple servings in a pot to reduce and thicken the broth.
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