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Think Tuscany style. I had this intense craving for some potatoes and sausage in a stew and I kept getting ideas right up till the end and this is what happened....my new favorite soup! MMM....I only wish I had made more! Better post it before I forget it! This recipe has a lot to do with colors and texture...so I wont change a thing next time I make it. I used the juices from the Thanksgiving Turkey and the broth from boiled chicken (I always freeze leftover broth cooled, strained and fat-skimmed for occasions such as this) for the soup base and I made use of frozen veggies where I could to eliminate all the chopping and excess time. I'm a mom, need I say more? MMM.....oh, sorry...dreaming of last night's meal again!
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or 1 1⁄2 tablespoons your fav oil
- 16 ounces of your fav sausage, thinly sliced into 1/8-inch thick slices. (I used Echrich Lite Smoked Sausage, skin on)
- 1 (16 ounce) bag frozen onion and three pepper blend (comes already chopped)
- 1 (16 ounce) bag frozen leaf spinach (can use frozen chopped spinach if you prefer)
- 6 cups chicken broth (Best to make your own by boiling poultry parts, but if you buy it..spend the money for the good stuf)
- 7 -8 ounces light alfredo sauce with parmesan cheese (Use your favorite brand. That's about half a jar.)
- 4 -5 medium potatoes, quartered longways and then thinly sliced. I used a combination of bakers and reds. Really, whatever
- Read directions through before starting. My directions always give more detail than the average cook needs, but I do so for the sake of my own future accuracy.
- Heat a large skillet (to stir fry onions and peppers in) on medium high heat with the olive oil. Swirl pan to coat the bottom. When oil starts to shimmer, turn heat to high for 1 minute then carefully add the whole bag of frozen onions and peppers. Stir to coat the veggies evenly in the oil.
- Set your soup pot -- medium to large size pot beside the area you are going to chop your potatoes. Time to scrub and chop the potatoes. Quarter them longways (leaving the skin on helps the potatoes keep this nice shape in the end. I can't guarantee anything more than mush potatoes if you peel them) line them up and thinly slice. We're talking about 1/8 inch slices, here. Not big chunks. Texture is important. Put potatoes into your soup pot as you cut them. Stir onions a few times while doing the potatoes. The water from the ice crystals should be about gone when you finish the potatoes (maybe 5 minutes or so). If you are slow with the knife, just watch your onions and peppers and remove them when .see next step.
- When the water has cooked out of the onions and peppers and they are starting to sound like they are sizzling in the oil a little bit, add them to your soup pot with the potatoes. The peppers should have a nice bright color -- you don't want to cook them to death, here. Color is important in this soup.
- Now, turn burner down to low and let cool for 1 minute, then add empty fry pan back to burner. Then, get out your sausage and slice the sausage up first into four equal segments and then into those thin beautiful slices. I used a serrated knife -- whatever works quickly for you. Add the sausage to the pan as you get each segment cut. When you add the first segment of sliced pieces, turn the heat back up under your fry pan to medium-high. You want a few of your slices to get nicely browned.
- Start opening your broth, if you purchased cartons or canned. Measurements need not be exact -- you are looking for enough broth to cover the final ingredients. Add broth to soup pot with onions, peppers and potatoes.
- After sausage slices has browned VERY lightly, turn the burner up to high again and add the whole bag of frozen chopped or cut leaf spinach. Stir fry about 4-5 minutes until spinach is no longer frozen at all, but still very bright green. Do not overcook or the spinach will get brown looking and that just isn't very appetizing.Think canned spinach -- ick!
- Remove pan from burner (leave burner on and turn down to medium heat) and add sausage and spinach to soup pot.
- Put soup pot on burner med heat covered until it starts to bubble slightly. Then, lower heat to medium-low heat. Simmer gently for 45 minutes, stirring about every 15 minutes. If your soup starts a rolling boil, then turn it down till it only simmers. You are cooking the potatoes and allowing the flavors to meld together, but you don't want a high heat ruining the texture or color of your ingredients. Keep the lid on.we don't want to reduce this soup. You should have enough liquid for the ingredients to be "swimming". If not, then add water or broth by the half cup until it's right.
- Taste your soup after 45 minutes and add any salt or pepper you think it might need. I didn't add anything (not even garlic powder that I dearly love) and we loved it!
- Remove lid and take pot off of hot burner. SLOWLY stir in half of your Alfredo sauce. Stir, stir, stir! Don't let your Alfredo separate on you! Your soup should have a milky tint. Like I said.if you want more Alfredo sauce -- feel free!
- Serve immediately.
- By the way, even though I was a stuffed little piglet after this meal, I couldn't help but sneak back for a taste before bed.and this soup is also good cold.