I was treated to this for the first time when I visited my brother and his wife in Vermont years ago. It tastes delicious year round, but is especially satisfying on a cold and blustery winter day.
Sausage and Sweet Potato Soup
1 large yellow onion
1 red pepper
2 large carrots
4 cloves garlic, minced
Chop in a small dice. I do these in two batches so that they brown nicer (they tend to steam if you crowd the pan). Saute onion in 1 T. butter and 1 T. oil (with some salt and pepper) on medium heat, stirring every minute or so, until caramelized. Remove from pan and add red pepper and carrots (with salt and pepper and a little bit of thyme) until nicely caramelized as well. At the end, saute the garlic for a minute or so. Add the onions back in and set aside.
Peel and cut into bite size pieces two large sweet potatoes (I prefer the yellow rather than orange variety, but suit your own preferences here). Put into a large bowl and add 2-3 T. of olive oil, and a tsp. each of kosher salt and medium ground black pepper. Toss it all together and spread onto a baking sheet (on parchment paper or a Silpat if you have it). Bake for 25 minutes in a 400°F oven until lightly browned on the bottom and fork tender.
Brown up the sausage of your choice. I used one package of Aidell’s chicken/with garlic (that’s about the right amount), but you can put in your favorite (links are nice, but even ground sweet Italian sausage works).
If you make your own vegetable stock, this is perfect here. If not, try 10 cups of water and 4 T. of Better than Bouillon Vegetable stock. If you’ve never tried it, it’s amazing in soups. I also add one 32 oz. can of my very favorite canned tomatoes (San Marzano is a good one)… don’t go cheap on this ingredient because you want great tomato flavor. I also add about 8 oz. of some tomatoes I keep in the freezer from last summer (See Roasting Your Own Tomatoes on this site). In lieu of that. however, you can also add a couple T. of tomato paste). A little of your favorite red wine doesn’t go amiss in this recipe either.
Add everything to the soup pot and bring to a boil and then turn down and simmer for 15-20 minutes. About 10 minutes before serving, chop a couple big handfuls of fresh baby spinach and add it to the pot. (Or the green of your choice). Don’t forget to CHOP them though. It’s hard to eat otherwise.
Hmmm, what else? Oh, some fresh grated Romano or Parmesan is delicious as a garnish. So are fresh cut scallions on top of a dollop of either sour cream or creme fraiche.
This is an extremely versatile soup. Play around with it and have fun! Happy eating!
Recipe inspired by Coleen Fox