Pasta Fazool

2c mixed beans and lentils (My grocery carries a nice mix for cheap.)
12 oz Italian sausage links (Make sure you like them; the flavor is going to dominate.)
1 red onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 big carrots, chopped
14 oz can tomato sauce
two quarts water or stock
2 bunches kale, sliced the short way into fine ribbons
1c strozzapreti, penne, ziti, etc.

Soak beans overnight (or boil briefly and soak for an hour).
Drain and rinse beans.

Remove skins from sausage links.
Cut links into bite-sized rounds.
Brown sausage in oil, in soup pot.
Remove sausage from pot and set aside.

Saute onions, celery and carrots in sausage fat until softened and slightly caramelized.
Add tomato sauce.
Add water.
Add beans.
Stir.

Bring to boil.
Reduce to simmer.
Simmer for two hours, stirring occasionally. Add water if necessary.

Return browned sausage to pot.
Add kale.
Simmer for thirty minutes.

Add pasta.

Simmer for fifteen minutes, or until everything is done to your liking.

Season with salt (I use “Better than Bouillon” brand chicken base instead of plain salt, for richness) and pepper.

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