Here in my pocket of the midwest, we’ve had days upon days of gray, damp weather. Rather than an earnest rain, a perpetual mist has been falling from the sky. It takes a toll not only on my hair (can you say crazy bangs?), but on my spirit as well.
Dreary days call for hot, hearty meals. Here’s one I cooked up the other day with fall veggies from my CSA share from Vermont Valley Community Farm. I highly recommend the recipe if your appetite and attitude need a little warming up.
Hearty Potato & Kale Soup with Sausage
- 1 large bunch of kale: remove the coarse stems and chop the leaves into bite-sized pieces
- 6 potatoes, sliced thin
- olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 cup of chopped carrots
- 1 cup of chopped celery
- 1 and 1/2 lbs. italian sausage
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon roasted red pepper flakes
- 6 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth
- 1 and 1/2 cups Whole Milk
- 1/2 cup Half-and-half
- 1 TB dried oregano
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- freshly-ground black pepper, to taste
Boil sliced potatoes in a large pot or Dutch oven. Drain and set aside.
In a skillet, crumble and brown the Italian sausage. Add in the minced garlic. Drain off the fat and set the browned sausage aside.
In the large pot or Dutch oven you used for the potatoes, heat 2 TB olive oil. Add in the onions, carrots, and celery and saute them until they begin to soften. Add the chicken broth, roasted red pepper flakes, basil, oregano, and black pepper. Bring to a simmer, then add the sausage, milk, and half and half. Simmer for 30 minutes. Add the potatoes and kale and simmer for an additional 15-20 minutes, then serve.
Tip: Don’t make the mistake I once made and let the soup get too hot or come to a rolling boil while simmering–it will “break” the milk and you’ll lose the smooth, creamy texture. That being said, if you’re like me and you like to walk away, throw in a load of laundry, and read a book to your kid while the soup is simmering and the milk happens to break, don’t freak out. It will still taste fine, it just won’t look like it came from Bon Appetit.