Heat 2 tbsp oil in a soup pot over medium heat and saute 3 cloves of garlic, onion, chili pepper, small fennel bulb* and 2-3 links of mild italian sausage out of casing and in little pieces for 7-8 minutes or until everything is nice and browned. * Save some the little green tops from the fennel bulb to garnish.
Add the broth broth, potatoes (I used red skins with the skin on most) and apples. Sweet apples are good for this -- I used Red delicious and Fuji. Heat soup to boiling and then reduce to low. Add chickpeas and cover.
Give it about an hour and taste to see if you need to add more water or if all is good. Add 2 tbsp on chopped fresh sage and 6 tbsp chopped parsley.
Stir and serve.
I chopped some extra sage for the table and grated the pecornio directly in the individual bowls serving. A nice crusty bread rounds it out
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