This all local, organic, vegetarian soup was created in honor of Bo Muller-Moore, Team Kale and the Eat More Kale campaign. It was sold out on The Farmstand Coop the first week, and so I (as Mama D’s Kitchen) ran it for a second one. Many thanks to all who supported Bo with soup purchases.
This simple-to-make and warming-to-eat cool season soup is reminiscent of both the well-known Portuguese “caldo verde” (green soup) sans sausage and the cold-weather staple, creamy potato-leek soup. It consists of a smooth, creamy and thoroughly satisfying base with a smattering of visual and nutritional excitement from the bright green kale. The ingredients are easy to find at year-round farmers markets as well as most supermarkets.
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 leeks, thoroughly washed and white and light green portions chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 celeriac (also called celery root), peeled and cubed
- 3-4 potatoes (such as Yukon gold), peeled and cubed
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 1 bunch fresh kale (or 1 frozen package, in a pinch)
- 1/2-1 cup milk or cream (optional)
- salt, to taste
- pepper, to taste
- grated parmesan (optional)
- Heat 1 tablespoon of butter in large soup pot. Sauté onions and leeks until translucent and with the appearance of starting to melt (this will add to the soup’s creaminess).
- Add garlic, potatoes and celeriac. Toss to coat and add vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and allow to simmer until vegetables are soft.
- Heat remaining tablespoon of butter in a skillet and give chopped kale a quick sauté. Watch it carefully and take it off heat as soon as the kale reaches a beautiful bright green color.
- Once soup vegetables are soft, purée either in the pot with an immersion blender, or in batches in an upright blender or food processor, until smooth. I find the immersion blender more convenient, but a traditional upright blender or food processor produces a smoother soup.
- Adjust consistency with stock, milk or cream and season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in kale and serve topped with grated parmesan, if using.
To make it vegan: This soup can easily be made without dairy by sautéing in olive oil and eliminating the final addition of milk or cream. The sautéed leeks, cooked potatoes and celeriac once puréed create a lusciously creamy soup. If you wanted to thin the soup, you can use more stock or an unsweetened dairy-free milk substitute.
To make it Paleo/Primal: Sauté the vegetables in coconut oil, and prepare the soup with your stock of choice. The puréed vegetables will make the soup creamy, so you do not need to add any milk or cream, however adding coconut milk would likely produce a very tasty tropical version of this soup.
To make it non-veg: Substitute chicken or turkey broth for the vegetable broth and sauté thinly sliced sausage with the kale before adding to the potato-leek soup base.