Tuscan White Bean and Sausage Stew
Recipe type: Main
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
A hearty rustic stew made with Cannellini beans, kale, sausage and bacon that is slow cooked in a Dutch oven.
  • 1 pound dried cannellini beans, sorted and rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 ounces pancetta or thick cut bacon, cut into small pieces
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 carrots, cut into ½ inch pieces
  • 3 celery ribs, cut into ½ inch pieces
  • 10 garlic cloves, peeled and diced or crushed
  • ½ pound chicken sausage, cut into ½ inch chunks
  • 4 cups organic chicken broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 pound kale, stemmed and leaves chopped into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 can diced roasted tomatoes, drained
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  1. Dissolve 3 tablespoons of salt in 4 quarts cold water in a large bowl. Add dried beans and soak at room temperature overnight (8 hours or up to 24 hours.) Drain and rinse well.
  2. Preheat oven to 250 degrees and adjust rack to lower-middle position.
  3. Heat olive oil and sausage in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook until browned. Remove from pan and set aside.
  4. Add bacon (or pancetta) to the same pan or Dutch oven and cook over medium heat. Cook until lightly browned.
  5. Add onion, celery, carrots and cook until vegetables are soft and lightly browned (about 10-15 minutes.)
  6. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant (only a minute.)
  7. Stir in broth, water, bay leaves, sausage and soaked beans.
  8. Increase heat to high and bring to just a simmer. Don't allow liquid to boil.
  9. Cover pot and place in oven. Cook until beans are almost tender (about 45 minutes to an hour.)
  10. Remove pot from oven and stir in kale and tomatoes. Place pot back in oven and continue cooking until beans and kale is tender (about 35 minutes.)
  11. Remove pot from oven, place rosemary sprigs in stew. Cover and let stand for 15 minutes. Remove bay leaves and rosemary and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  12. Serve over bread and drizzle with olive oil.
Cook's Illustrated also suggests using the back of a spoon to smash some of the beans for a thicker, creamier texture.
Recipe by Laura's Best Recipes at http://laurasbestrecipes.com/2012/09/tuscan-white-bean-and-sausage-stew/