Recipe: Sausage, Kale, and Lentil Soup | March 31, 2011
I was so happy to see this recipe in the Week in a Day episode I chose, since my CSA has been providing me with lots of beautiful kale. I was also happy to see a hearty soup on the list, as the winter-into-spring weather has been providing some crazy temperature fluctuations (in other words, soup season ain’t quite over yet).
Much like the bolognese, the most crucial things you need for this soup are a big stock pot and some simmering time. The only tricky thing is the lentils – since I was planning on pre-cooking and then reheating the soup, I didn’t want to cook the lentils 100% during the first simmer. I probably undershot it a tad, though, since they ended up being a bit too al dente when we ate the meal the first time around. I had enough soup left over to freeze a few servings, so I imagine that the lentils will be softer with each reheating.
Flavor-wise, the soup is spot on – if you follow the recipe and use hot sausage, it provides a wonderful spicy kick. If hot isn’t your thing, I’m sure it would be delicious with a sweeter or milder sausage. Enjoy!
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pound hot sausage, bulk or casing removed
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 ribs celery, chopped, leafy tops reserved
- 1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
- 1 large Idaho (russet) potato, peeled and chopped into small dice
- 1 Fresno or Holland chile pepper, thinly sliced or finely chopped
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped
- 2 large cloves garlic, chopped or sliced
- 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 bundle Tuscan, black, or dinosaur kale, stemmed and very thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1 cup white wine
- Freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 3/4 cups lentils
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 cups water
In a soup pot or large Dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil. Add the sausage, breaking it into pieces, and cook until lightly brown. Add the onions, celery, carrots, potato, chile pepper, rosemary, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper, and cook to soften, 8 to 10 minutes. Wilt in the kale, and season the kale leaves with a little freshly grated nutmeg. Stir in the tomato paste for 30 seconds, then add white wine. Cook to reduce by 1/2 and stir in the lentils, stock, and water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and simmer the soup until the lentils are tender, about 35 minutes. Serve immediately or cool, store, and reheat. Serve with chopped celery greens to garnish.