Sausage and Kale Soup

Kneaders Bakery & Cafe Restaurant Copycat Recipe

1 pound ground mild Italian sausage
1 small onion, finely diced
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
1 celery rib, finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced or shredded
2 cups cubed red potatoes
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon ground thyme
1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
1/2 cup butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 cup all purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
5 kale leaves

In a pan, brown the sausage for 3 to 4 minutes.  Add in the onion and continue cooking until the sausage is completely cooked through.  Add the sausage and onion to the slow cooker. Add the broth, water, celery, carrot, potatoes, garlic powder, thyme and parsley to the slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW for 4 hours, or until potatoes are tender.

In a small bowl combine the salt, pepper, and flour. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter over medium low heat. Stir in the flour mixture by tablespoon at a time to form a roux. Whisk in the  milk, a little at a time, until fully incorporated and smooth. Stir the cream mixture into the slow cooker and then let the soup cook on high without the lid for 15 more minutes.

While soup is cooking add Parmesan cheese into the soup.  Cut up kale leaves into bite size (or smaller) pieces and add to the soup.  Ladle into soup bowls and serve. Makes 10 servings.

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