Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Zuppa Toscana and Pillsbury Rolls with a Twist

Today was a rainy, chilly, and very long day. I really wanted a good hearty soup (when don't I?). I browsed through my recipes and came across one of mine and Chad's favorites. Like many others, I discovered this soup at an Olive Garden restaurant. It seemed so simple to make so I took a shot one day and was pleasantly surprised how easy it was. Since then I have seen many recipes on the web for this soup and many have slightly different variations. I have my own, which is probably very close to some of the others out there.

I also did a little experimenting on some bread for tonight's dinner. I was in no mood to make homemade bread, and a trip to the grocery was out of the question. I noticed that I had a can of the Pillsbury Dinner Rolls in my fridge. I knew I didn't want something as plain as them so I decided to combine all the individual rolls together to make a bread. I couldn't stop there though, so I decided to roll it out and add roasted garlic, cheese, and oregano. It was pretty sticky when I first started rolling it out, so I added some flour and it became easier to roll out. Next time I will add the flour while combining the rolls together and let sit for about 10 minutes. The result was delicious, and went nicely with the soup. Tonight's meal was a perfect ending to a not so perfect day.

Zuppa Toscana
  • 1lb mild italian sausage casings removed
  • 1 tbs. olive oil
  • 6 slices bacon chopped
  • 2 medium sized potatoes and sliced in small half moons
  • 10 + cups chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • About 4 cups torn Kale leaves
  • 1 can drained and rinsed cannellini beans
  • 1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2/3 C. heavy cream
  • Fresh ground pepper to taste
In a large stock pot heat olive oil over medium heat. Add sausage and break up with a wooden spoon. When cooked transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Add bacon and cook until slightly crispy. Remove and add to same plate as sausage. Drain all but 2 Tbs. or so of fat. Add onions and saute until soft, then add garlic, red pepper flakes and bay leaf and saute a couple minutes more. Add cold stock and remove all the stuck on bits on the bottom of the pan with your wooden spoon. Add potatoes and meat and bring to a boil. Simmer 15-20 minutes then add beans, kale and cream. Simmer 10 minutes more and serve.

Cheesy Bread
  • 1 Can Pillsbury Dinner rolls combined into a ball
  • 1 tbs. flour
  • 1 tbs. unsalted butter cut into small pieces
  • 2 Tbs. Parmesan
  • 1 tbs. mozzarella
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano divided
  • 3 cloves roasted garlic
  • olive oil to brush top
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine dinner rolls into a ball while adding flour. Put aside for about 10 minutes and dust rolling surface with flour. Roll out dough into a rectangle (it will be about a foot long and 3 inches wide). Spread dough with garlic and dot with butter. Sprinkle with cheese and fold in half. Brush top with olive oil and sprinke with a little more cheese. Bake for about 15 minutes or until golden.


Anonymous said...

Yummy! I LOVE bread! I have never used those rolls...but this picture is making me want to right now! :)

Jaime said...

yum! this is one of my favorite soups! this is totally a meal i could see myself making... thanks for sharing :)