I do love a good bowl of soup. For the past few years I’ve been trying to find new soup recipes that we like. I found a copy-cat recipe for my favorite Zuppa Toscana at Olive Garden and then made some changes to better suit our taste. If you’re familiar with this soup at the restaurant you’ll notice that my recipe is missing the kale. When I order this soup I always eat around the greens because I’m not a fan, so when making it at home I just omit it (and then add an extra potato to bulk it up). I’ve been thinking about substituting julienned carrots or perhaps a little sliced celery so that there will be some more vegetal substance to it, but so far we’re really happy with the way I have it now.
1 pound ground sausage (I use regular but feel free to use the hot variety if you prefer.)
1 onion, diced
2 tsp. fresh minced garlic (a few cloves)
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flake (This amount makes the soup about medium spicy. I like to leave it there because it’s not too hot for the kids and you can always add a shake or two of extra pepper flake to your own bowl if you want.)
1 tsp. dried basil
6 cups water + 6 cubes of dried chicken bouillon (or just use six cups of prepared chicken stock)
2 pounds of russet potatoes, scrubbed, skins on, sliced thinly (I do mine somewhere around 1/4-inch, thin enough to cook quickly but just enough heft left to them so they won’t completely disintegrate while boiling.)
1 cup heavy cream
1) Saute the sausage with onion and garlic until the sausage is no longer pink. Drain the fat.
2) Add the red pepper flake, basil, water and bouillon cubes. Bring to a soft boil. Add sliced potatoes. Boil until tender but not falling apart.
3) Add heavy cream. Stir and serve.
I like to serve this with a fresh green salad since we’re missing the greens inside the soup. Delicious!