For years, I envied friends that could throw stuff in a pot and make it taste delicious. I’m the one who had to find a recipe and follow it exactly, thinking I didn’t know enough to blaze my own way. Recently, I started keeping a food journal. I made note of the components of a dish I really enjoyed and brainstormed all the ways I would improve a dish I thought had potential. And then one day, seemingly out of the blue, I started concocting my own recipes.
A few weeks ago, on a cold, dreary day I was wandering the grocery store craving a hearty soup, but I didn’t want it to be thick like a stew. I knew I wanted kale and spicy sausage in it, and when I passed the sweet potatoes in the veggie section my heart started to race–that might be good. And that’s how this soup was born. It’s smokey, with a touch of heat and a touch of sweet.
What you’ll need to serve six people:
- 1 onion, halved then sliced thin
- 1 pound ground sirloin
- 4 chopped cloves of garlic or 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 14oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups peeled, diced sweet potatoes (2-3 small potatoes)
- 1 bunch green kale, torn off stem into pieces
- 2 hot Italian sausages, cooked (It’s important to use fully cooked sausage. You want the sausage to be spicy. If it isn’t fully cooked, the spiciness will drain into the broth and the sausage will taste just like the ground meat.)
Drizzle some oil into a big soup pot. Drop in the onion and sauté until soft. Add the ground meat and garlic, and sprinkle in some salt and pepper. Break up the meat while it’s browning. Once the meat is cooked through, add the diced tomatoes with juice, chicken broth, sweet potato, oregano, paprika, and salt. Bring to a boil. Add the kale.
I know this looks like A LOT
but it cooks down to this.
Cover the pot and lower to a simmer for 15-20 minutes until a fork can go through the sweet potato. Add sliced hot Italian sausage and simmer another 5-10 minutes until it’s heated through. So delicious!