Monday, November 3, 2008

Portuguese Kale Soup

I love homemade soup. For me it is a perfect dinner for a cold night, and then I have an effortless lunch for the next few days.

If you’re looking for a bowl of traditional Cape Cod comfort, clam chowder isn’t the only choice. The Portuguese immigrants who originally arrived in Provincetown to work on whaling vessels in the late 1800’s became the mainstay of the town’s fishing fleet for nearly a century, bringing a flavorful food tradition that lives on today.

Portuguese kale soup is hearty, delicious and on the daily menu of several local restaurants. The first time I tried it was at the local pub, the Land Ho! and I’ve loved it ever since.

It never occured to me to make kale soup at home until I saw a recipe in the Cape Codder Newspaper about 20 years ago. I probably still have that newspaper clipping in my recipe box (because that's the kind of pack rat I am), but I've made this soup so often that I know it by heart.

Most restaurants use the Portuguese sausage linguica, but I prefer chorizo for its slightly spicier flavor. For this batch of soup I used the yellow carrots I grew in my garden. I have a few beets and carrots still in the ground ready to be harvested and then it will be time to put the garden to rest for the winter.

This soup is wonderful paired with a loaf of homemade bread. As the Portuguese say, Bom apetite!

The Recipe:

Portuguese Kale Soup

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium red pepper, diced
2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 pound package of chorizo or linguica, sliced
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
2 cans chicken stock
5 red bliss potatoes, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
4 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried basil or 2 teaspoons of fresh
1 bunch kale, washed and sliced
1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Heat olive oil in large soup pot. Add onions, red pepper, and garlic and sauté for five minutes. Add chorizo and sauté another minute. Add tomatoes, chicken stock, potatoes, and carrots, salt, pepper, basil and enough water to cover vegetables. Simmer for 20 minutes. Add kale and kidney beans and simmer for another 20 – 25 minutes.

For a printable recipe click here


Meg said...

This looks amazing! I have never tried Kale before, so maybe I will start with this recipe!

Dharm said...

Nothing like homemade soup! That looks just superb! I replied to your mail but there seems to be a problem with your ISP not liking mine, but I think it finally went through. If it didnt, so glad the prawns turned out well and of course you can link back to my blog!

Laurie said...

Meg, You must try kale. It really is tasty.

Dharm, I got your email, and thanks again for everything!

We Are Never Full said...

ah-ha... nice quick version of caldo verde. yes, kale is an underrated and misunderstood green. we eat it a few times a week. at 99 cents a bunch, how can you not want to try?

Alicia Foodycat said...

Laurie that soup looks wonderful - and how interesting that you have this Portuguese influence!

Anonymous said...

Well, I just made this recipe for lunch today, and it as utterly phenomenal. Fortunately, the recipe makes enough for two meals, so we now have some fantastic leftovers to look forward to. It's as good as, if not better than anything I have ever had up the Cape, and I've been going there over a dozen years now. Best. Kale. Soup. Recipe. Ever.