I saw a recipe for this on Pinterest and decided it would be the perfect food for a weekday meal. I ran to the store and bought the basic ingredients and then came back and started dinner. But those of you that know me know that I'm: 1. A spice girl 2. A meatatarian. 3. I don't follow directions. So, while I followed the basic recipes I came across online I also added to this recipe to give it more kick. Who am I to think I know better than Olive Garden?? Well, I'm Trish. It's what I do. (Not following directions that is...)
The recipe called for sweet Italian sausage and then added red pepper flakes.. and I thought "why not just buy hot Italian sausage?" I'm wise beyond my years like that. ;)
But then I also decided that I wanted more than just Italian sausage so I also bought a link of smoked sausage and added that as well. I think Olive Garden should do that too.
I didn't need much kale. This small bunch was all that was needed. Now if you don't know about kale you should. Dr. Oz calls it one of the super foods. It is high in beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C, lutein, calcium, and most importantly has sulforaphane which has potent anti-cancer properties. See?? Now, you have to try it!!!
I've used kale for years in my dressing at Thanksgiving and my family won't have it any other way. (It is great sauteed with a little bit of onion, olive oil, salt and pepper. )
Be sure to thoroughly wash your kale. The leaves are very curly and can hide little grains of sand.
While my Italian sausage was browning slowly I washed my pieces of kale and spun it dry in my salad spinner. Then I diced 2 small yellow onions, and 2 garlic cloves, and one small russet potato. and also my smoked sausage.
I browned all of the sausage together with the veggies (except the kale) into the pot and stirred it around long enough to just soften the onions up a bit and then I added 8 cups of water with 2 of the Knorr Chicken Broth cups in it. See picture below.
And THEN just because I'm crazy like this.. I went ahead and added red pepper flakes into the soup even though I bought the hot Italian sausage. I added between 1/8 and 1/4 of a teaspoon. I can't tell you though because I didn't measure. I just took a pinch of it and threw it in.
I just fill my measuring cup with water and dump 2 of these little packets in there. The water has to be hot for it to dissolve. This is so much more tasty to me than regular chicken broth in a can. It has herbs that will float to the top. It tastes more like homemade chicken stock.
After the potatoes have softened up and soup is ready to serve add the kale pieces, and then lower heat or turn it off completely and add a cup of whipping cream or you can even use 1/2 and 1/2. If you prefer to cut the fat. The flavor will still be amazing.
This soup was spicy but not too hot. At least not for me. If you can't handle the heat I'd avoid adding the red pepper flakes.
Yum! This was a great comfort food dish! I can't wait to have a bowl of left over soup today!
Life on the lake is laid back. When we cook it's far from being fancy affair. It's all about relaxing with friends and family and enjoying comfort food. More often than not it's not all that healthy but boy it sure is good!!!
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