I recently found myself in a very chilly situation.
To warm up, I made a hearty kale and potato soup. The first time I made this humble soup, I feared that it would seem too boring for my dinner companion’s taste. So I spiced it up with a fancy name and an intriguing story. I introduced the soup as “Caldo Verde, the National Soup of Portugal.”
Kyle said, “ooooooooh,” as I had anticipated. He was pretty excited to try the beloved stew of a foreign land. Hook, line, and sinker. So when I took my first slurp of this easy, hearty soup, I was surprised to find that the bowl didn’t need a worldly title to grab your attention. One taste was all it took for me to realize that caldo verde is special in its own right. Thanks to spicy, chewy soy chorizo from Twin Oaks and tender leafy kale from Victory Farms, this soup fills your stomach, warms your heart and excites your tastebuds.
I suggest you make a batch before winter gives way to spring and hearty soups play second fiddle to fresh grilled veggies. There is a time and place for everything, and right now, while there is still a little chill in the sunrise and sunset, is the time for thick potato soup with leafy greens and spicy soy-rizo. No smoke, no mirrors, just soup. Caldo. Caliente. Yum.
Caldo Verde (6 hearty servings)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 pounds white or russet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 2 quarts vegetable stock
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1/2 pound soy chorizo, crumbled
- 1 pound kale, shredded
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add potatoes, stock, and crushed red pepper. Stir to combine and cook, covered, over medium heat for one hour.
- Remove from heat and use an immersion blender to puree some of the potato into the broth. Do not blend until smooth; leave some small potato pieces in the broth for texture is desired.
- Return to heat, add soy chorizo and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add kale and cook an additional 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve hot with crusty bread and the flair of a world traveler who is insecure about the humble beginnings of her potato soup.