Ribolita translated from Italian means “reboiled”. Translate “reboiled” in english equates to “leftovers”. This is a hearty peasant stew with a thousand Italian family variations. There are a few core ingredients; tomatoes, kale (dark green variety known as lacinato), cannellini beans, and stale bread. I did not include the bread in this particular recipe but, you can easily prepare a few toasted croutons with olive oil and Parmesan cheese to top this delicious stew.
The idea behind this stew is to use what you may have leftover from a couple of days of meals. If you are eating pretty good you will probably have a few vegetables to add to the pot, and maybe even a leftover baguette from the weekend to make a few croutons. The stew is versatile and can be made ahead of time and with any variety of vegetables you may have available.
This makes for a big pot on Sunday and a healthy lunch or dinner throughout the week.
Tuscan Style Ribolita with Sausage and Kale
1-1/2 lbs. sweet or hot Italian sausage (removed from the casings)
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 small red onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
8-ounces fresh kale, stemmed, ribbed and chopped
1-28 ounces can diced tomatoes
2-15 ounces cans Cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
2 teaspoons chili pepper flakes
4 cups chicken stock
Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a large pot over medium-low heat. Add onion, carrot, garlic and chili pepper flakes to the pot. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing occasionally, for 5-6 minutes, until the vegetables have softened. Add the sausage and cook, breaking up the meat into pieces, until browned, for 3-4 minutes.
Add the diced tomatoes, cannelloni beans, chicken stock to the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 10-15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Add the kale to the pot and cook, covered, until the kale has wilted. Season with salt and pepper, if necessary.