Caldo Verde is a traditional Portuguese soup made from collard greens and potatoes. Kale is sometimes substituted for the collard greens, and the sausage is optional. We used an organic smoked Chorizo that is one of the options available through CSA+. What’s CSA+? It’s a new way of ordering CSA options – check out their website to learn more! This soup is a pretty simple simmer, and if you’re a vegetarian this is very easy to prepare without the sausage. Week 16 of our CSA Shares included hot peppers, so I added one serrano pepper to this batch. While not traditional, it added a nice spicy flavor – perfect for our rainy Monday!
This soup goes fairly quickly if you get the onions and sausage started, then prep the potatoes and collards while they’re softening.
You can chop the collards by hand, or try putting them through a food processor with a slicing blade. It shreds them into nice uniform shreds.
The first half of the sausage, potatoes, onions, and stock are mixed with an immersion blender just a little, you don’t want to puree it super smooth. If any large potato chunks remain after, just mash them with a wooden spoon. Finish the soup by adding the remaining sliced chorizo. Serve with a crusty bread, and a dollop of greek yogurt if you like. (not traditional, but great with the potatoes)
1 bunch collard greens, stems removed and shredded. Cut by hand or use a food processor with a slicing blade.
1 lb potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 lb smoked chorizo, thinly sliced
8 cups chicken stock
1 large onion, diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
optional: 1 hot pepper like serrano or jalepeno, deseeded and minced
1 tsp sea salt
Heat the olive oil over medium low heat in a stock pot. Cook the onions, half of the chorizo, and hot pepper if using, until onions are softened, about 5 minutes. Add the potatoes and chicken stock to pan and simmer until potatoes are soft, about 15 minutes. Use an immersion blender to pulse the soup into a coarse puree. If any large potato chunks remain, mash them with the back of a spoon. Add shredded collards and salt to the pan and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes until collards are softened. Add remaining chorizo to the pot, and cook for 3 additional minutes. Remove from heat, taste and adjust salt if necessary.
Variations. Vegetarian version, increase olive oil to 1/4 cup. Sub vegetable stock for chicken, and add 1 teaspoon smoked paprika. To use ground chorizo instead of smoked, remove sausage from the casing and brown in a stock pot. Remove the sausage and set aside. Don’t wipe out the pan, add the olive oil, and cook the onions. Follow the directions as written and add the ground sausage at the end of cooking.