Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup (December 23, 2010)

carla and i are reunited for the holidays, and that means we’re doing a little cooking in between all the parties and restaurant dining. since the holidays are busy, we wanted something that would last a few days and wouldn’t take too much time and energy to make, as it was already late in the day when we planned.

after vetoing rick bayless’s soups (too much time and energy), i found this recipe for sweet potato and sausage soup on carla’s favorite food blog, smitten kitchen. it seemed quite easy, and she already had many ingredients on hand, so we went for it.

from smitten kitchen
Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup
Bon Appetit, October 2007

Makes 8 servings

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 10- to 11-ounce fully cooked smoked Portuguese linguica sausage or chorizo sausage, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices (Spanish chorizo can be substituted)
2 medium onions, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 pounds red-skinned sweet potatoes (yams; about 2 large), peeled, quartered lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 pound white-skinned potatoes, peeled, halved lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
6 cups low-salt chicken broth
1 9-ounce bag fresh spinach

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add sausage; cook until brown, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Transfer sausage to paper towels to drain. (I poured off some of the oil in the pot at this point, but the original recipe doesn’t think this is needed.) Add onions and garlic to pot and cook until translucent, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add all potatoes and cook until beginning to soften, stirring often, about 12 minutes. Add broth; bring to boil, scraping up browned bits. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until potatoes are soft, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Using potato masher, mash some of potatoes in pot. Add browned sausage to soup. Stir in spinach and simmer just until wilted, about 5 minutes. Stir in remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Season with salt and pepper. Divide among bowls and serve.

we followed the recipe fairly closely, using a spanish chorizo – not as spicy as its mexican counterpart, but still distinct in its flavor.

i thought it was pretty excellent. i should’ve really diced the sausage into small pieces – the slices were just a bit too large as we made it, and they stayed rather firm, making them hard to break up with a spoon. but the wonderful flavor of sweet potatoes really came through nicely, and it was pretty painless to prepare. of course, it helps having two people to do all the prep work…i give it an A-.

CARLA: i thought it was very good; agree on the sausage comment above, they needed to be smaller pieces. i don’t know what else, david. oh, probably an A. i’d probably make it again.


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