Caldo verde is a typical Portuguese celebration soup. Translated to “green broth,” caldo verde is made from potatoes, kale and chorizo. How can we not get behind a traditional soup made with kale?
But any traditional recipe is a magnet for tweaking, and here I present to you my version. In my healthier caldo verde, I combine sweet potatoes with the traditional white potatoes for extra antioxidants and B-complex vitamins. If it feels heavy and potato-y, know that there are plenty of immune-boosting onions and lots of shredded kale for green factor.
And a little sliced sausage for salt and texture. Caldo verde is normally made with boiled and sliced chorizo, but I prefer to cook the sausages whole in the pot first, then use some of the rendered fat to cook the onions and potatoes. (Buy sausages made from organic, pastured meat for the best taste and more health benefits.)
Although typically eaten before a meal, this caldo verde is filling enough to eat on its own for dinner (even after a workout). All the whole food ingredients make a soup that is more filling than it seems, giving you the yummy elements of sweet sweet potatoes, salty and spicy sausage, silky kale and a creamy potato base.
I have two basic tips that will help to boost the texture and flavour of this soup (or any other soup that you’re making):
- Add more water and salt than you normally would (go slowly until you find the perfect amounts, keeping in mind that the sausage will add salt, too).
- Blend half the soup until very smooth and combine with the unblended soup. Squash any large pieces of onion or potato with the back of your ladle.
Cool? Here’s the recipe.
- 2 sausages (spicy is best)
- Olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, cut into thin slices
- 2 sweet potatoes, diced
- 6 small nugget potatoes, diced
- 1 head of kale, washed, stemmed and cut into thin ribbons
- Sea salt and pepper
- Begin by cooking the sausages. Drizzle a small amount of olive oil into a large pot and heat over medium. Add the sausages and cook through, turning when necessary. Remove to a bowl or cutting board.
- Wipe out most of the rendered sausage fat, leaving just one tablespoon or so. Add onion, a pinch of salt and pepper, and sauté until the onion softens. Add sweet and regular potatoes and another little pinch of sea salt and stir.
- Cover with water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook until potatoes are tender and remove from heat.
- Transfer around half of the soup to a blender and blend until smooth. Using the back of a ladle, squish any large pieces of potato that remain. Pour blended soup back into the pot and turn heat to low-medium. Add more water if the soup looks too thick.
- Meanwhile, once the sausage has cooled, slice into thin rounds and add to the pot with the sliced kale. Once the kale is soft and silky, season to taste with a little more salt and pepper, if needed.
- Drizzle a little piri piri hot sauce and/or olive oil overtop and enjoy.
Wishing you delicious green (and sweet potato) broth. xo Andrea