Monday, October 26, 2009

Cold Weather Cravings For Soup

I've feel the cold-weather cravings for homemade soup. Here is a recipe for Zuppa Toscano which is one of my favorites. I usually make a big pot and freeze the rest in Ziplock bowls so that I can pop one out of the freezer during the week if I don’t have a lot of time to cook and still want a hearty meal.

Get good sausage for the soup – usually the store bought Turkey sausage can be pretty bland. You can get great homemade sausage at the following specialty meat markets in Chicago:

Gepperth’s Meat Market 1964 N. Halsted (773) 549-3883

Paulina Meat Market 3501 N. Lincoln Avenue (corner of Lincoln & Cornelia) (773) 248-6272

Zuppa Toscano

1 LB ground Italian Turkey Sausage (Take casing off)

1 tsp crushed red pepper

1 medium onion, diced

4 pieces of bacon, fried and crumbled

2 tsp garlic

10 cups chicken broth (homemade if possible)

Heavy cream or half and half (optional)

3 large red potatoes – sliced thin

¼ bunch kale (organic if possible)

Take the casing off the sausage and sauté with crushed red pepper in the soup pot. Drain excess fat and refrigerate while you prepare the other ingredients. In the same pan, sauté bacon, onions and garlic for 15 minutes or until onions are soft. Mix in the homemade chicken broth. Boil and add the potatoes and cook until soft – usually about 15 minutes. Add cream or half and half – just a little to change the color of the broth to white. Sir in the sausage and the kale. Cook just for a few minutes. Serve with crusty Italian bread.