Tuscan Potato Kale Soup

I used to subscribe to Cooking Light magazine and clip recipes.  I have a ton of them.  There was one that looked really good but boy were there a lot of steps!  Not only were there a lot of steps but it required a food processor, a blender, and several pots and pans.  I hate doing dishes.  So I retooled the recipe, so to speak.  I wanted something tasty and simple to make.  My daughter loves what I came up with.  🙂

To begin with I roast two bulbs of garlic.  This should be done earlier and allowed to cool so it is easier to work with.

Dice about a cup of onions and saute about 3/4 of that in olive oil in a large saucepan.  I use the olive oil from the roasted garlic.  Cube about 6 cups of potatoes and saute for a few minutes with the onions.  Add some salt and pepper to taste.

Add 4 cups of chicken stock and bring to a boil.  Then simmer for about 10 minutes.  Add a cup or so of chopped kale and cook another 10 minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender.

In the meantime, take two Italian sausages out of their casings and place in a hot skillet to begin browning.  Also add 1-2 oz of pancetta to the pan.  Once the fat begins to render add the rest of the onion to the skillet.

As this begins to brown I turn my attention back to the saucepan and add a cup of milk.  This can be cream, fat free milk, chef’s choice basically.  I add in the roast garlic and then bring it back to a simmer.

We have an immersion blender and it’s a great tool to have for soups and things.  I remove the soup from the heat and blend the ingredients together.

Once it is completely blended I add in the meat and a cup or so of grated pecorino cheese.  At this point I check the seasonings as the cheese and pancetta can be quite salty.  Add more salt if needed but not before you check at this point.  The consistency should look like this:

At this point it is ready to serve!  I always make sure there is plenty of pecorino on the table for people to grate the cheese over the soup.

While not difficult to make this soup does require a bit of time to bring it all together but it is worth the effort.  A very healthy and tasty meal!

 

French Onion Soup

For the longest time I wasn’t a fan of French Onion soup.  It was always overpowering and heavy on the stomach.  Then I met my husband who loves this soup.  But he had the same problem of finding a decent recipe.  We found one from Hannafords and then changed it a bit and now we have a soup that is very easy to make and we all love eating it.

To start melt 2 T of butter in a saucepan.

I thinly slice about 1 1/2 large onions and saute in the butter.  Cook until they start to soften and then add a tablespoon of sugar.  Stir well.  I found a lot of recipes called for 3 large onions but it would be too much of an onion flavour and you wouldn’t get a balance of all the flavours.

Saute for another 5 minutes or so.  Add 4 cups of broth.  We use the veg broth though most recipes call for a beef broth.  Heat until simmering.  Add a few squirts of stone ground mustard, 3 T of cognac, 3-4 T of Worcestershire sauce.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

I like it to simmer for awhile if I have the time for the flavours to really come together but once it is heated through it can be served.  I butter some bread and toast them to top the soup.  Then grate some Jarlsberg cheese over it all.  Broil until melted and serve.

This is perfect on a cold day or when your schedule is hectic.  And if you want a variation of this try the french onion grilled cheese sandwiches.   A big hit in my family.  🙂