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Portuguese Kale and Potato Soup
by Charlie Burke

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At the Sanbornton NH Farmers’ Market
we were frequently asked “what do you
do with kale?” That started us thinking
of providing recipes and ultimately led
to our publishing “Sharing Our Bounty”
our cookbook published last year. This
recipe is in the book and is my favorite
kale recipe.

In a group visiting the Farmers Diner in Vermont, I  began discussing this soup
with (The Heart of New England's publisher) Marcia Passos Duffy and
mentioned that if linguica is not available, you can substitute Polish kielbasa.
Narrowed eyes and tense body language immediately told me that Marcia did
not agree!  She’s since relented and said substitution is permitted if no linguica
can be had. I’m sure her Portuguese grandmother would not have been so

Kale improves with cold weather and frost is available in the fall and winter
months, and this soup is hearty enough to serve as a meal. Like many soups
and chowders, the flavor is even better the next day. If you plan to serve it the
same day, try to do it ahead a few hours and reheat at serving time.  

2 large russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1” pieces
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 ½ cups finely chopped onion
¾ cup chopped carrot
¼ cup olive oil
4 cups chicken broth
4 cups water
3/4 pound linguica, sliced ¼ inch thick
¾ pound kale, stems removed, leaves rolled and thinly
sliced, then chopped  
1 pound red potatoes cut into 1 inch pieces

In a large pot, sauté the garlic, onion and carrot in olive oil over medium heat,
stirring until soft – do not brown. Add potatoes, water and broth, bring to a boil
and then simmer until potatoes are soft (10 – 15 minutes). While the potatoes
are simmering, cook linguica in a skillet over medium to high heat, browning
on both sides. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

Transfer cooked potatoes to a blender using a slotted spoon, add 1 ½ cups
cooking liquid and puree until smooth (hold cover tightly, covered with a
kitchen towel). Return puree to the pot and add linguica, kale, and the red
potatoes. Simmer, covered for 10 – 15 minutes until potatoes are done. Correct
seasoning with salt and pepper, being careful with the salt if salted broth was

Great on cold fall and winter days and really quite easy to prepare; let’s hope
Marcia approves!
 (Editor's Note: I do! )

About the author

An organic farmer and avid cook, writer Charlie Burke is the vice president of
the New Hampshire Farmer’s Market Association ( and helps
run the Sanbornton Farmers' Market. Along with his wife, Joanne, he grows
certified organic herbs, greens and berries at Weather Hill Farm in Sanbornton,
NH.  His column & recipes appear weekly in The Heart of New England's
newsletter... to get your free subscription send a blank email to
The Heart of New England
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