Caldo Verde Soup (Portuguese Green Soup)

Sometimes it's what's in the fridge that needs using up that inspires what I cook for supper.  Yesterday I had two large Turkey/Chicken Sausages from Costco leftover from a previous meal that directed my recipe search. Also in the fridge I had kale, lots of baby spinach and some potatoes that needed using up. They were tricolor new potatoes instead of regular red ones, but potatoes are potatoes.  A quick search on Mealime brought this gem. 

I personally love home made soups. They are total comfort food, especially with some toasted bread on the side.  This one also doesn't have rice, quinoa, pasta or other carb, so the calories per serving are lower.  I have to admit I didn't follow all the instructions exactly to the letter and sometimes guessed on amounts - what size tomato and how much kale is a half a bunch. But in the end it came out like what Rachel Ray would call a STOUP - a hearty soup that is almost like a stew.  

I made the two serving amount, but Mealime recipes usually have generous serving sizes, so I have some leftover for lunch today. YEAH! With the weather slowly cooling, I can finally indulge my love of hearty stews and soups again and this was a great way to being.  Life is good. 


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Caldo Verde Soup
Serves 2

Ingredients - 

½                  (5 oz) pkg baby spinach
32 fl oz         Chicken or vegetable broth (1 liter container)
2                   Cloves garlic
½                  Bunch kale
1                   Leek
2                   Pork sausages (I used 2 leftover large turkey/chicken sausages)
2                   Medium red potatoes, skin on
1                   Tomato
2 tsp              Extra virgin olive oil, divided
3/4 tsp           Paprika
1/2 tsp           Salt
1/4 tsp           Black pepper

Instructions - 

Preheat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. While the pan heats up, cut the sausages into ½-inch thick pieces. Once the pan is hot, add 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil and swirl to coat the bottom. Add sausage and pan-fry, stirring occasionally, until browned and cooked through, 5-6 minute. When the sausage is done, remove to a plate using a slotted spoon and set aside.

Using a clean cutting board, trim off the root end and dark green top of the leek, leaving only the white and pale green parts. Cut in half lengthwise and rinse under running water, separating the layers to remove dirt and grit. Slice crosswise into ¼-inch thick pieces; place in a medium bowl. Dice tomato and add to the bowl with the leek. Peel and mince or press garlic; add to the bowl.

Return the pan (with cooking juices) to medium-high heat and add 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil. Add leek, tomato, garlic, and spices; cook, stirring occasionally, until veggies start to soften, about 5 minutes. While the veggies cook, peel, quarter, and slice potatoes into ½-inch thick pieces. Add potatoes and broth to the pan; stir to combine and bring to a boil over high heat.

Meanwhile, fold kale leaves in half lengthwise and slice off the stems. Chop or tear leaves into bite-sized pieces; add to the soup. Once the soup comes to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until potatoes and kale are tender, 8-10 minutes.

While the soup cooks, roughly chop spinach and set aside. When the potatoes and kale are tender, add cooked sausage and spinach to the soup and continue to simmer until spinach is wilted and sausage is heated through, 2-3 minutes more. Remove from heat.

To serve, divide soup between bowls and enjoy!