Going home! The sheltering arms of a golden maple, lasting stone walls, a family going home for the holidays — enduring images of a safe and secure time and place.
In our family, the day before Thanksgiving has become as rife with the ritual as the feast itself. It’s in vogue now to say “the whole family gathers in the kitchen.”
Our guys are known for replicating the time-honored recipe for escarole soup, which Papa called zuppa di scarola. Enjoyable the day before Thanksgiving Day.
1 pound sweet Italian sausage, prosciutto ends, soppresato, or pepperoni remnants from a generous butcher
4 quarts of chicken stock
6 garlic cloves, minced
freshly ground black pepper
1 pound dry white beans, washed and drained
2 heads escarole, roughly chopped (about 4 cups worth, available bagged and cleaned at Tops)
1/4 teaspoon oregano
3 to 4 leaves fresh basil
pinch of red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf
salt to taste
freshly grated Romano cheese
Brown the sausage or meat ends, in a large soup pot. Remove meat and set aside.
Add the stock, garlic and several grindings of black pepper to the soup pot.
Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer, scraping all the browned bits from the bottom of the pot.
Add the beans and herbs, and cook, covered, for about 30 minutes, then add the meat back in.
Simmer on lowest heat until the beans are tender.
Add the escarole, and cook until the escarole is soft.
Taste and adjust the seasonings.
Serve with plenty of freshly grated Romano cheese and garlic bread for dipping.
Thousands of “home chefs” call Foster Farms at 1-800-255-7227, to speak live with specialists on call to provide you with tasty recipes and fool-proof cooking for the big day.
Foster Farms, a family-owned business in the western United States since 1939 has thousands of calls even on Thanksgiving Day.