I grew up in Poland, on soups…
Polish cousine is known for a vast variety of soups. We can make soup almost out of everything! 🙂 Almost…
Zuppa Toscana is made with KALE.
Kale was never a popular vegetable in Poland (or at least back in a day when I was there… :)) It was used more as a decorative accent to display or serve cold cuts, deviled eggs and other cold dishes.
In addition to kale, sausage, potatoes and cream are a must to make Zuppa Toscana.
I tried making it without the cream, but it’s not the same. So, the way I look at it, if you are going to make Zuppa Toscana, you may as well make it the right way, enjoy it and get ready to workout extra hard the next day! 🙂
If my Mother only knew about Zuppa Toscana…
She would be making it every other day, alternating it with her favorite Cabbage Soup! 🙂
Zuppa Toscana has 3 of my Mom’s favorite ingredients: potatoes, sausage and heavy cream! Perhaps it was for the best, she didn’t know about this soup, otherwise I would have been 300 pounds! 🙂
Zuppa Toscana is not figure friendly, I know, but if you want some comfort soup, THIS is for you!
Every time I make it, I have a piece of mind that it is naturally gluten-free, and I try to focus on the healthy properties of kale… and keep hoping, that somehow kale will fight off the fat from the cream, and the sausage, and the carbs from potatoes… 🙂 hahaha
I try to cut back on the calories by using half and half instead of heavy cream. Sometimes, I don’t use bacon. I find bacon totally optional in this soup. The sausage is enough to flavor the entire pot of soup.
I’ve never had Zuppa Toscana at Olive Garden, but I have been told that it’s one of the dishes Olive Garden is famous for.
I came across Zuppa Toscana recipe on food.com years ago and since then made a lot of changes perfecting it. I dare to say, THIS version is better than the original recipe I started off with. Hope, you will love what I have done with this recipe.
Let’s start off with what we need to make a huge pot of Zuppa Toscana:
First on a chopping block – BACON!
I looove thick cut bacon, which I get from Costco!
BTW, I LOOOVE Costco!
We’re not going to just look at this beautiful bacon. Oh, no! We will sauté it in a large, 7qt Dutch Oven until it becomes nice and golden brown, and renders enough fat to sauté our next flavor builder – sausage!
Of course, bacon had to give up its spotlight for this…
While sausage is having fun sizzling, let’s chop some onion! And, maybe some garlic too, while we’re at it…
Before we knew it, sausage was browned and ready to hop out of our pot. Good!
Onion and garlic are ready to do its magic:
Onions will be golden brown in no time, so let’s slice some potatoes:
Because…. as soon as our onion is ready, it’s time for marrying some ingredients: water, bouillon, potatoes and sausage:
Yup! It’s time! Time for some kale and cream that is:
Time to enjoy this delicious soup!
As Always, Eat Well, Spend Wisely!
- 5 slices thick bacon, sliced into small pieces
- 12 oz package Sweet, Mild or Hot Italian Sausage (depending on how hot you like it)
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 lbs Russet potatoes, peeled and sliced
- 1 Tbsp chicken bouillon
- 10 cups water
- 1 bunch kale, washed and chopped
- 1 cup half and half
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes (or more, depending how hot you like it)
- 1 tsp garlic salt
- salt and pepper to taste
- In Dutch oven, brown bacon. Remove onto paper toweled plate to drain.
- In the same Dutch oven, brown sausage in the bacon fat, breaking it to pieces with a potato masher. Remove to drain on paper towel.
- In the same Dutch oven, sauté chopped onions and garlic (add some olive oil if not enough bacon fat).
- Add water with chicken bouillon and bring to a boil.
- Add sliced potatoes and drained sausage and cook on medium heat until potatoes are fork tender (about 15 minutes).
- Add chopped kale.
- At the end, add cream (do NOT bring to a boil!)
- Season to taste.