Monday, September 28, 2009

Zuppa Toscana

I've been sick with a cold and cough for the past few days. So while at the grocery store a few days ago, buying some items to help me heal, I figured to buy ingredients to make all kinds of soups. That day was the worst of my illness, so I needed to buy something quick that I can make for lunch. Boxed Matzo Ball soup. Then I proceeded to the produce section and saw that there was a sale on potatoes - $.69 for a 5 lb. bag of russet potatoes. But what can I do with so much potatoes?!?! Mashed potatoes, chicken croquettes, and, oh yeah, my zuppa toscana!

This recipe is a similar version of the Zuppa Toscana you'd find at Olive Garden. I was able to figure out the recipe. And now, my family always requests me to make it in the winter time, especially around Christmas or New Year's eve. I've been up to cooking for a day or two now, so I thought to make Zuppa Toscana to help me heal even quicker.

4 slices of bacon (regular or turkey bacon)
1 Tbsp. oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, chopped
2 pieces italian sausage (however spicy you prefer. you can also use italian turkey sausage)
2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced into small pieces
6 cups chicken broth
1 cup heavy cream
2-3 cups kale leaves, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

1) In a stock pot, cook bacon until crisp. Set aside bacon. Add oil. Stir in onions and garlic and cook for a few seconds. In the meantime, squeeze the meat out of the casing of the italian sausage. Add the meat into pan, making sure to break up the meat into small pieces. Stir until meat has cooked through.

2) Add chicken broth and potatoes to the pan. Then add salt and pepper to taste. Simmer on medium-low for about 15 minutes, or until the potatoes have almost cooked through. Add heavy cream and bring back to a boil. Crumble the bacon into the soup. Add kale leaves and cook for another 2-3 minutes and serve.

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