Thursday, April 23, 2009

Caldo Verde

So our CSA experiment is going...okay.

Don't get me wrong, I love it. We get tons of fresh, organic veggies every week and I love finding new recipes to use them in.

However, my a different story. He will try everything I make, but after about ten different sauteed types of greens in as many days, he got a little sick of them.

I've been promising him that the greens are only because that's what's grown this time of year, and soon we're going to get more tomatoes, cucumbers, peas, and other spring and summer produce than we'll know what to do with!

In the meantime, thought, we've found a compromise. I've been using all our greens to make soups. And we found a soup we like that uses tons of greens, and it's sooo good! We both really, really like it.

It's in a cookbook called Recipes for America's Small Farms, which my mom got me for Christmas. Although the recipe may not look like much, it's so good. This is definitely a very simple soup that tastes much better than the sum of its parts.

Caldo Verde
(Because Dan's a Spanish teacher, we can translate this for you - it means "GREEN SOUP" in English! You're welcome!)

1 onion, peeled and minced
1 garlic clove, peeled and minced
4 Tablespoons olive oil
6 large Maine or Eastern potatoes, peeled and sliced thin (note from Kristi - I have no idea what these are, I just use regular Texas potatoes and they work perfectly)
6 ounces chorizo, pepperoni, or other dry garlicky sausage, sliced thin (note - don't skip this, although I have to admit my definition of "dry garlicky" has varied wildly depending on what's in my fridge at the time...)
2.5 teaspoons salt, or so
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 pound collard, kale, or turnip greens (or swiss chard, or spinach..) trimmed of coarse stems and veins, rolled crosswise and sliced filament thin
2 quarts water (I think it tastes better if you use chicken broth for at least some of this)
*Also, I usually add some cumin, and the recipe says that it will taste good with any of your favorite herbs and spices!

Saute the onion and garlic in 3 T of the oil for 2 or 3 minutes over moderate heat until they begin to color and turn glassy. Add potatoes and saute, stirring constantly, 2 or 3 minutes, until they begin to color also. Add the water/chicken broth, cover, and boil gently over moderate heat 20 to 25 minutes, until the potatoes are mushy. Meanwhile, fry the sausage in another saucepan over low heat for 10 to 12 minutes, until most of the fat has cooked out; drain well and reserve.

When the potatoes are soft, remove the pan from the stove, and with a potato masher, mash the potatoes right in the pan in the soup mixture. Add sausage, salt, and pepper, return to moderate heat, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the greens and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes, until tender. Mix in the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, and taste the soup for salt and pepper. Serve accompanied with a crusty bread.


1 comment:

Camden said...

This looks pretty tasty. Perhaps I'll have to try it!