Sunday, February 17, 2013

Warm your tummy Portuguese Soup

Hey All! It's 40 degrees in South Florida today~!!!
When we heard the chill was coming we ran straight to the grocery and grabbed the ingredients for Portuguese Soup! A pot of that on the stove warms ya to the bone!! It's warming, soothing comfort food at it's best. So grab a loaf of crusty bread and join me in the kitchen. We're making Soupa!!!

My VoVo's Portuguese Soup


1 - 1 1/2 lbs Beef Shank (Can substitute Beef Short Ribs if can't find shank works perfectly well.)
To decide how much you really need know that you should have about a 2 inch piece for each serving of soup so everyone gets a piece of the meat in their bowl.

1 lb Chourico (Portuguese sausage for my Floridian friends it's only sold in Publix)
*Can substitute andouille here or a mexican chorizo but be sure it's not cooked)
* Can also omit. Won't change the flavor of the soup.

1/2 Cup dried Green Split Peas (Boil them in 2 cups of water for 20-25 minutes. Hold aside.

5 or 6 White Potatoes (depends on size) Peeled and Cubed
1/2 -3/4 Head of Cabbage (again depends on size) Chopped
1 1/2 cups chopped Fresh Kale ( can sub frozen)
3 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup chopped Onion
1 tsp red crushed pepper (dried)
4 - 5 Cups Chicken Stock
(optional) 3/4 cup Ditalini (small soup pasta) (uncooked)


Salt and Pepper both sides of Beek Shank (do not remove from bone)

In a Soup Pot on Medium High Heat add Olive Oil and Shanks
Once Shank has color on both sides add onion and red pepper.
When onions are translucent add stock. Scrape all renderings from bottom of pan.
When stock comes to a boil add Potatoes and Chourico, stir and wait for stock to come to a boil again.
When it does add the Cabbage, the Kale and the Split Peas (water and all).
Bring to boil one more time. Taste. (Does it have enough salt and pepper?) Add to preference.
Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 hour minimum.
After an hour add 2 cups of water and pasta if desired.
Simmer until Pasta is cooked through (about 12-15 mins)
Serve Hot with crusty bread. Serve every portion with a piece of meat and a piece of chourico. :)


**P.S.  If at anytime you think the soup is a little dense with ingredients and not enough stock... Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil... it will thin it out to your liking, But only do 2 cups of water at a not to thin the stock too much.
This is an "Old World" from my Grandmother kind of recipe. It's rustic. It's meant to be that way. Make it this way the first time...and if you want to change it up by adding different veggies, meats, or pasta, Do it! Sweet potatoes work really well in this soup (btw)! Feel free to make it your own! My Husband's grandfather use to add a Chicken Breast. They took the meat from the soup before serving and put it on a platter in the center of the table. Then they served the soup in bowls with crusty bread and everyone just took the meat they wanted and added it to their bowl. It works in whatever way you want it to! Just ENJOY it!