Inigo Montoya is BACK February 3, 2010Posted by Toy Lady in Cooking, Food.
You know, I think it’s time to watch The Princess Bride again, isn’t it? After all, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, if you go in for that kind of stuff. Which we don’t. But still, the Spaniard has been much on my mind of late, especially since potatoes are on sale this week!
You know, that’s just the way it’s gonna be, I guess. If I find a Spanish dish to make, there’s gonna be a Princess Bride reference.
We had a boatload of fresh kale from a recent trip to the public market, so I thought a pot of Spanish Soup would be a good way to use up some of it.
One thing today’s soup has in common with the earlier potato dish is chorizo.
Chorizo is a highly spiced Spanish sausage, and honestly? a little goes a long way. That’s not to say I wouldn’t be happy to just chow on a stick of chorizo – I’ve been known to do that with pepperoni in my misspent youth.
But if you’re beyond that stage of development, you’d want to use the chorizo, along with a bunch of fresh kale and some other stuff, to make a soup that, while “Spanish kale soup” may sound plain-jane boring, it actually turned out to be one of the highlights of the week – so much so that I didn’t have any left to freeze for a later lunch, anyway.
I started by browning a, um,stick of chorizo, sliced into 1/4-inch slices. For the record, next time, I’d chop each slice into quarters and just have diced chorizo. Live an learn.
And actually, before that, I started by soaking a pound of cannelini beans. I’m reasonably sure that any biggish white beans would work, that’s just what we had on hand.
So you’ve got your soaked beans and your sauteed chorizo. Remove the sausage from the pan – there’s going to be a lot of grease in the chorizo-browning pan. Use that to brown some chopped onions. Then add the (already soaked) beans, a couple of bay leaves, 1/2 tsp. dried thyme, 1 Tbsp. rosemary (I dug out fresh from the garden, otherwise use 1 teaspoon of dried) 8 (not 7 and not 9) peppercorns, and 2 cloves.
Awfully specific for soup, huh?
I also added about a pound of diced ham, 2 quarts (or 8 cups) (or thereabouts) of hot water.
Bring that up to a boil, reduce, and simmer, covered, for an hour and a half, stirring occasionally.
Your beans aren’t going to be quite done yet – but they’re getting there, fear not!
Now we add a couple of diced potatoes (diced fairly small – maybe 1/2-inch cubes) and return the browned chorizo to the pot.
While that was cooking for yet another hour, I had time to chop the kale (remember, it IS kale soup!). Remember, this is going into soup, and we’ll be eating it with a spoon, so we need it to be fairly, well, spoon-friendly.
After an hour, we added the kale and let it cook for a bit longer (like another hour) (this obviously took the better part of the day), then the whole thing went into a bowl in the fridge until Soup Night.
That’s an official day around here, you know. Friday is Pizza Night, and Wednesday is Soup Night.
And on Soup Night, the soup got pulled out of the fridge, reheated, and enjoyed. Everyone knows soup is almost always better after a couple of days in the fridge, flavors melding and just getting happy . . .
Now I know one might think “oh, kale soup, yeah it was OK” and one would be perfectly justified in thinking that. After all, what is kale, other than cabbage’s leafier cousin?
But oh, you’d be so wrong! This soup was WONDERFUL! It was so full of flavor, between the sausage and the ham and, yes, the kale, too.
This was one leftover that wasn’t left over for long, that’s for sure.