Recipe found on

Makes 4 servings


  • 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound hot Italian sausage (4 links)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped (1 cup)
  • ½ bulb fennel, finely chopped (1 cup), plus fronds for serving
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 Parmesan rind, plus shaved Parmesan for serving
  • ⅔ cup pastina, such as acini di pepe
  • 3 cups escarole leaves, torn into bite-size pieces
  • 2 teaspoons white-wine vinegar


In a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium. Add the sausage; cook, turning occasionally, until browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Add the onion, fennel, and a pinch of salt to pot. Cook, stirring, until softened, 10 minutes (if browning too quickly, add a splash of water). Add the broth, 3 cups of water, and rind. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, toast pastina in a dry skillet over medium-high heat, stirring often, until golden, about 4 minutes. Add to simmering broth. Slice the sausage; add to saucepan with accumulated juices. Cook, stirring, until the pastina is al dente and sausage is cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes. Drizzle the escarole with vinegar; season with salt and pepper and divide evenly among bowls. Ladle soup over it; top with shaved cheese, fennel fronds, and pepper.