SPANISH STYLE KALE SOUP WITH CHORIZO
As much of the country is caught in the grip of winter cold I thought it was time I shared with you one of my favorite soup recipes; SPANISH STYLE KALE SOUP WITH CHORIZO. It is a delicious, hearty soup that makes a warm and comforting dinner, especially in winter. I served it to friends last weekend who joined us in our bar for a casual dinner by the fire.
Paying homage to my Spanish heritage, this Spanish style soup includes one of my favorite ingredients, chorizo sausage. In America when folks think of chorizo they usually have the soft, Mexican style in mind, that is commonly found in most grocery stores. That however, is not what I have in mind for this recipe. Instead, what I use is the authentic Spanish style chorizo sausage which is dry-cured, hard, pork sausage seasoned with smoked paprika. If you have never tasted Spanish chorizo you must make an effort to do so, as there is no other sausage quite like it, or quite as good. Spanish chorizo sausage can be found in every type and price range here at La Tienda. You may also be able to find it at a Latin market that carries food from Span. For me, the most convenient place to buy chorizo sausage is here at World Market.
While the chorizo sold at World Market is not made in Spain, it is the best alternative I have found to the difficult-to-get and expensive imported chorizo. I stock up on it every time I visit a World Market, as it keeps well for long periods of time in my refrigerator. This way I always have it on hand when I make my Tortilla Española or Paella recipes. To get started we will make a Spanish Sofrito, not to be confused with an Italian Soffritto. A “Sofrito”, pronounced, So’frito, is a mixture of aromatic ingredients cut into small pieces and then sauteed in olive oil. It is used as the basis for many Spanish dishes.
So, we will start by dicing up 1 medium sized onion and 3 medium sized carrots. Then heat 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil in a large stockpot and add the diced onion and carrots.
Saute the vegetables until they begin to soften, the onions become translucent and the carrots tender.
Next, mince 5 large cloves of garlic…
and add the garlic to the onions and carrots.
To the sofrito add kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste along with 1/8th teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes. Continue to saute the sofrito for about 3 more minutes, being careful not to brown the garlic, as that makes it bitter tasting.
Now it’s time to prepare the chorizo sausage.
First, slice 8 ounces of Chorizo down the middle lengthwise. Then cut each halved sausage into thin, bite sized slices.
Add the sausage to the sofrito…
and saute, stirring, until the sausage is heated through and releases some of its flavorful juices. The chorizo sausage is already fully cooked when you purchase it.
Next we will add 8 cups of chicken broth and simmer it over low heat while we prepare the beans.
Open two, 15 ounce cans of Cannellini or white kidney beans. Drain and rinse 1 can of beans, add it to the soup and using a potato masher, mash the beans. This can also be done in a separate bowl with a fork, then add the already mashed beans to the pot. Mashing one can of beans helps to give a slight thickness to the broth.
Now drain and rinse the 2nd can of beans and add them whole to the pot.
Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer while you prepare the kale. Thoroughly wash 1 pound of kale. I prefer the Tuscan style kale because it is easy to remove the tough, inner stem simply by running your fingers down the middle of the stem. Once you remove the stems, dice the kale into small pieces and add it to the hot, simmering soup.
Finally, we will add two important ingredients that give this soup its wonderful Spanish flavor; 1 package Sazón Seasoning and 1 tablespoon Pimenton Dulce. Sazón is a unique blend of seasoning that includes saffron and gives both color and flavor to the soup. Be sure to buy the Sazón “Con Azafran” meaning with Saffron. Pimenton Dulce is sweet, Spanish style paprika. I prefer the flavor of sweet paprika but others use the smoked paprika. Either is fine.
Now, give this delicious soup a taste and adjust the salt, pepper and seasoning to taste. Allow the soup to simmer until the kale is tender.
Now it is ready to be enjoyed steaming hot with some crusty bread. ENJOY!
So there you have it: SPANISH STYLE KALE SOUP WITH CHORIZO
If you’d like to know more about Spanish Chorizo Sausage, the wonderful sausage from Spain, you can read all about it in an excellent article in The Huffington Post here.
Below is the printable recipe.
- 1 Medium Onion, Diced
- 3 Medium Carrots, Diced
- ¼ Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 5 Large Cloves Garlic, Minced
- ⅛ Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
- Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper to Taste
- 8 Oz. Chorizo Sausage, Thinly Sliced
- 8 Cups Chicken Broth
- 2 -15 Oz. Cans Cannellini or White Kidney Beans, Drained and Rinsed
- 1 Lb. Tuscan Kale, Stemmed and Rough Chopped
- 1 Pkg. Sazón Seasoning Mix Con Azafran, by Goya
- 1 Tablespoon Pimenton Dulce (Spanish Paprika)
- Heat the olive oil in a large stock pot, then add the diced onion and carrots.
- Saute the vegetables until they begin to soften, the onions become translucent and the carrots tender.
- Add the garlic and crushed red pepper flakes to the onions and carrots.
- Add kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
- Continue to saute over moderate heat for about 3 more minutes, being careful not to brown the garlic, as that makes it bitter tasting.
- Add the chorizo sausage and saute, stirring, until the sausage is heated through and releases some of its flavorful juices.
- Add the chicken broth and one can of beans.
- Using a potato masher, mash the beans.
- Add the second can of beans, leaving them whole.
- Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer.
- Add the kale to the hot, simmering soup.
- Add package of Sazón Seasoning and Pimenton Dulce plus additional salt and pepper to taste.
- Allow the soup to simmer until the kale is tender.
- Serve hot.
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