Chuckie's Tortellini and Sausage Stew
Yield: 6 to 8 servingsAn outstanding stew that's perfect for those nights when every member of the family needs to eat at a different time -- it makes a lot, can be reheated over and over, and gets even better each time. The contributor says she got the recipe from a friend, Chuckie, "who learned in his bachelor days how to impress the ladies with a few culinary delights handed down from his mom." Anyone who wants to make an impression on a member of the opposite sex should have a few recipes as good as this one.
Ingredients:1 pound sweet or hot Italian sausage (turkey sausage may be used)
1 cup chopped onion
4 garlic cloves, minced
10 cups beef broth or stock
1/2 cup water
1 cup dry red wine
2 cans (28 ounces each) peeled tomatoes, chopped
1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
1 cup thinly sliced carrots
1-1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1-1/2 teaspoons dried basil
2 small zucchini, sliced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 cups dry tortellini pasta
3 tablespoons dried parsley
Instructions:Remove the casings from the sausage and cut into bite-size pieces. Brown the sausage in a large saucepan or nonreactive Dutch oven. Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon and set aside. Drain off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat.
Add the onion and garlic to the saucepan and saute over medium-low heat until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Return the sausage to the pot along with the broth, water, wine, tomatoes, tomato sauce, carrots, oregano, and basil. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes.
Skim off any fat that rises to the top of the pot. Stir in the zucchini, green pepper, tortellini, and parsley. Simmer, covered, for 45 minutes or until the pasta and vegetables are tender.