Thursday, July 2, 2009

Drizzle, Soup, and

I understand that Seattle has gone over a month without rain. Albany, on the other hand, has more than made up for your loss. The difference with our rain, though, is that we end up with 2-3 inches of rain in just an hour or two. Torrential downpours, is how they are forecasted. I enjoy thunderstorms and how dark the sky gets suddenly. You'll be watching t.v. and the bottom of the screen will have an announcement regarding imminent thunderstorms, "Go inside immediately, being struck by lightening is one of the largest causes of death by natural disaster." Thanks for the warning, but if I'm reading this on my t.v., wouldn't that imply that I'm already inside? Kidding aside, the storms are pretty impressive and flash floods are extremely dangerous. Our street floods pretty quickly so I have to really plan my day accordingly.

The other difference with Albany rain is that we have such high humidity here. It's always muggy. It doesn't make much difference if it's 75 or 90 degrees- it's just always sticky. Such a contrast from the dry winters.

Today is extremely wet so I'm going to make Tuscan Bean Soup- I've adapted this from a Silverdale Waterfront Bakery recipe. It's a great soup for summer because it's hearty enough for a meal but not too heavy.

Tuscan Bean Soup

2 T Olive Oil
1 lb Italian Sausage cut into 1/4 in thick slices (I use half hot and half sweet)
1 1/4 cup chopped fennel bulb
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped leeks
1 clove chopped garlic
8 Cups Chicken Broth
1 14-1/2 oz Italian Style Diced Tomatoes
1/4 t ground black pepper
1/4 t oregano
1 19 oz can cannellini beans (rinsed)
1 19 oz can chickpeas(rinsed)

In a 6-quart saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil and saute the sausage over medium heat. Cook sausage until heated through. Remove sausage and drain drippings. Add remaining olive oil, as well as the fennel, onion, and leeks. Saute until softened- about 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook for one minute. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, pepper, oregano. Cook for 10 minutes longer. Add the beans and bring to a boil and cook for a few minutes. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Enjoy!

As a side note, I also recently started writing for It's a website that gives insider info on all things local. I can't decide if it's hokey or not but I'm an "Albany Day Trips Examiner." I have to write a few articles a week about things to do in the area. I get paid when people read my articles or go to my site. Glorified blog? I'm not sure, but it's a fun hobby at the very least. I have such a good time exploring the area and it's been fun writing about it on this blog. It's got me thinking that writing for a travel or food magazine just might be my dream job. So- you have to start somewhere, right? Here is my website- if you are interested in checking it out.

Of course, it's all about Albany - so you might want to check out the Seattle section. It's actually a fairly informative website.

1 comment:

Meg said...

I made this soup for dinner last night. Benji and I loved it! So good, great flavors! I just know it'll be even better tonight! Thanks Jen