Sausage Tortellini Soup



3 links Italian sausage [1 used 1/4 lb turkey sausage and 2 fat Italian sausage link- for noticeably less fat, but same flavor]
4 cloves minced garlic
1 large onion, diced
½ c. water
2 cans chicken broth
½ c. apple cider [not sure why this was necessary, made it a little unpleasantly sweet, in my opinion]
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 c. sliced carrots
1 tsp. dried basil
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp thyme 
2 [about 7-8 inches each] zucchini, quartered and sliced 1/4 inch thick 
8 oz. cheese tortellini 
2 Tbsp. dried parsley

Begin cooking sausage over medium heat, stirring frequently. I cook mine in a cup or so of water to make draining the fat off much easier and the sausage seems to be easier  to crumble this way.] Drain it when browned. [I even added more water, shook it a bit, and drained again. I mean, you're eating sausage for dinner here folks. Try for a bit of healthy, or at least significantly less guilt inducing, eh? ] . Meanwhile, chop onions, zucchini and garlic, add to the sausage. 
Add all but tortellini,  cover and simmer for 45 minutes. Add parsley and simmer for another 15 minutes.
Serve with bread and freshly grated Parmesan. 


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