Kale, Elk Sausage + Potato Soup
I have yet to meet a person who doesn’t look forward to the coming of autumn if for nothing else than the anticipation of hot soups and warm bread. In lieu of our gargantuan harvest of kale this summer and fall, (it just kept growing and growing), I’ve become rather addicted in my obvious (this soup) and hidden ways to incorporate kale into pretty much everything we eat.
Getting Abby to eat kale isn’t a problem, Wyndham however will literally regurgitate any green leafy substance that accidentally makes it into his esophagus. I probably shouldn’t talk about food regurgitation whilst trying to paint you a mouthwatering picture of this soup. So, I shall end things there. Does this soup magically entice my son to eat kale? Nope. What? You thought I was going to say different? Nope, sorry.
But he will eat everything else and pick the kale out and I’ll just give him a sideways look when he pronounces how utterly disgusting kale is and my eyes glaze over in order to ignore his sauce (this would be called picking and choosing one’s battles with a toddler), to fond memories of that morning. Of him slurping down a smoothie that had near a pound of fresh kale in it. Disgusting. Or, delicious as he usually pronounces over the smoothies I make him. Ah, children, so easy to trick. Next up, Santa Claus. Therapy inducing stuff, I know.
In the meantime, there will always be the comforting warmth of homemade soup on cold autumn and winter days. Especially after a therapy session.
The key ingredient here is homemade bone broth, which, now that I’ve officially converted over to making my own big batch every 4-6 weeks, I’ll likely say about any soup, stew or gravy recipe. Because it’s true. Sure, store-bought will do, I’m not going to be a snob about it. I’m just rather fond of traditional, made-from-scratch foods.
- 1½ cups diced cooking onions
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 4 Elk Sausages (or other type sausage)
- 6 cups of de-stemmed, washed and torn kale (sounds like a lot but it really cooks down; your choice on type)
- 4 cups of cubed potato (your choice on type, I like baby reds with this soup)
- 6 cups of bone broth or stock
- 2 cups of full fat coconut milk (organic is indeed far better tasting and looking)
- 2 cups (or one 28 ounce jar) of diced plum tomatoes (I used the near last of our black krim plum tomatoes, the best sauce/soup/stew tomatoes ever)
- 2 tablespoons fresh oregano
- 1 tablespoon peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 Kashmiri pepper (smokey medium heat, absolutely lovely)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons EVOO
- Sea salt to taste
- Chop the onions (small chunks) and add them to a pan sizzling with the butter and EVOO (extra virgin olive oil, or just coconut oil if you want to make this dairy-free). Add a dash of salt as this draws out some of the moisture (also, I just like doing this) and sautée until golden and translucent. Add the minced garlic and stir, sautéeing for a few more minutes as things start to caramelize. Add the elk sausage.
- As the sausages cook, quick like a bunny...peel and chop bite sized chunks of the potato (your choice on type), to the pot with the sausages. That's right, no need whatsoever to cook them separately. In fact, frying them this way with the rest of that goodness only adds to the flavour of the soup.
- You should to turn and jumble the sausages and stuff around at this point and add in some splashes of broth/stock to de-glaze your dutch oven. (Did I mention that part? You should totally be using a heavy bottomed pot for this soup, as it's a one pot deal and you don't want things to easily stick and burn.) As the sausages continue to cook, wash and chop up your plum tomatoes. You could also add a jar of diced tomatoes. Add them to the pot. More turning and jumbling.
- De-stem, tear (small bite sized chunks) and wash the kale in a colander, drain and set aside.
- At this point things should be browning up nicely and the sausages should be nearly done. Toss in that Kashmiri pepper, (or two if you don't have little people who turn up their noses at to much heat), bay leaves and peppercorns now. If you're clever you'll put them in a cheesecloth satchel to make for easily removal in the end. Add in the oregano too, this doesn't go in the cheesecloth. Regardless of how quickly you work, the sausages should be done at the 15 minute mark and this is when you can take them out of the pot and cut length-wise and then in chunks to add back into the pot.
- You're in the finishing stages here, this really is such a simple, satisfying meal! Pour in the broth/stock, the coconut milk and stir, reducing the heat to a low simmer. Let that action squeak away and tease your nose for about 20 minutes.
- Add in the kale at last, this only needs to cook for 5-8 minutes tops. You don't wan't to cook it to death. You should totally serve this soup with some warm crusty-on-the-outside-and-soft-on-the-inside-type-bread and an obscene amount of butter, but it's not absolutely necessary. This is a filling soup, what with the potatoes and sausage. You should also top this soup with grated asiago cheese, parm shavings and/or chili oil.
- If you're not a fan of kale, I swear (on something good), that this will convert you. Trev is not the biggest fan (he'll sort of accept in in smoothies), and he genuinely mumbled utterances of appreciation through bites, so.