The first day of spring has arrived but here in Vermont we can expect cool weather to continue for another month or so. There is still time to enjoy a bowl of hearty black bean and sausage soup. The combination of sweet Italian turkey sausage, jalapeño peppers and fresh cilantro gives this black bean and sausage soup a distinctive flavor. If you have any leftovers they are easily reheated in the microwave or can be frozen for later use. Serve along with a leafy green salad and a loaf of bread and your have a meal!
Black Bean and Sausage Soup
½ pound sweet Italian turkey sausage
1 tsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
3 (15.5 oz) cans of black beans, rinsed and drained
4 cups chicken broth, preferably homemade
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
Spray a large nonstick saucepan with nonstick spray and set over medium low heat. Add the sausage and cook until browned on all sides, about 15 minutes. Transfer the sausage to a plate and when cool enough to handle, cut into ½ inch slices.
Heat the oil over medium heat in the same saucepan then add the onion, garlic and jalapeños. Cook, stirring until tender, about 8 minutes. Stir in the beans and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the flavors have blended, about 8 minutes.
Transfer 2 cups of the bean mixture to a blender or food processor and puree. Stir the puree and the sausage into the soup. Simmer, uncovered, until the soup is heated through, about 5 minutes. Remove form the heat, stir in the cilantro or sprinkle on top and serve.If you have an emersion blender that could also be used to puree the soup.