Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Zuppa Toscana on a Cold Winter Day

As the snow swirls outside my door, adding to the already rather thick blanket of white that has covered our town since Christmas, I am nestled warmly in my home busily alternating between blogging and nursing a pot of soup on my stove. Ahhhh yes, my two favorite things- blogging and Zuppa Toscana! The website I found the recipe on said that it was the authentic Olive Garden recipe- liberated by a former employee! It truly tastes like the real thing and everyone I have shared it with has loved it, so I thought I should share it with you all as well!

The recipe serves 6-8 people, so it is perfect for a large family or a small family that doesn't mind having (excellent, might I add) leftovers! Here you go:

1 lb. ground Italian Sausage
1 1/2 tsp. crushed Red Pepper
1 large diced white onion
4 Tbsp. bacon pieces
2 tsp. garlic puree
10 cups water
5 cubes of chicken bouillon (or 5 tsp. chicken base)
1 cup heavy cream
1 lb Russet potatoes (or about 3 large potatoes)
1/4 bunch of Kale

1. Saute Italian Sausage and crushed red pepper in pot. Drain excess fat, refrigerate while you prepare other ingredients.

2. In the same pan, sautee bacon, onions and garlic for approximately 15 mins. (or until the onions are soft).

3. Mix together the chicken bouillon (or base) and water, then add it to the onions, bacon and garlic. Cook until boiling.

4. Add potatoes and cook until soft, about 20-30 minutes.

5. Add heavy cream and cook until thoroughly heated.

6. Stir in sausage.

7. Add kale just before serving. Bon' Apettito!

I hope you can enjoy this delicious recipe on a cold winter day, as I have, and share it with those you love!

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