Italian Sausage, Kale, and Potato Soup (Zuppa Toscana)

January 12, 2012 at 2:16 am Leave a comment

I had realization the other day.

I say certain things that kids today probably would thing are weird.

For example:

“Roll the windows up/down.”

When I was a little kid, it was before automatic windows in cars were available, so we literally had to roll the windows up and down in our car. Even after we got a car with automatic windows when I was in middle school, we would still say, “roll the windows,” and to this day I still say it. My husband loves to makes fun of me for it.

Another example:


If I want to record a show or something on TV, I still say “videotape” or just “tape”, as in, “I want to videotape that show tonight”. When I stopped and thought about it, it doesn’t really make since as we no longer use VHS tapes anymore to record things, so there is no “tape” involved in the process.

I also say “videotape” instead film. Hisa and I got this really nice video camera last year before we left Japan. It’s tiny, incredibly lite, and takes amazingly high quality HD videos. It’s awesome. But I still say “videotape” or “tape” even though there’s no tape involved. Remember those huge video cameras from the 90’s that had VHS tapes in them? Ah, memories!

Which leads me to this:

10 Things 90’s Kids Will Have To Explain To Their Children

If you were a kid in the 90’s, you will understand this, laugh hilariously, and love it.

This recipe is my own copy cat version of the Zuppa Toscana soup from the Olive Garden. Come on, you know the one I mean. Everyone and their dog loves that soup. I think the first time I ever ate kale when I was a kid was when I first had that soup. Back in the 90’s when we rolled our car windows up and down. Respect y’all.

First, wash one bunch of kale, and tear it into small pieces. Set aside. Add a few lugs of olive oil to a large pot over medium heat. Add one chopped red onion and saute for a couple minutes.


Add one pound of turkey sausage, and continue cooking until the onion becomes tender, and the sausage is completely browned. [Note: If you use real Italian sausage, brown the sausage by itself first, drain the fat, and then add the onion to cook.]


Add one diced carrot (the real Zuppa Toscana doesn’t have carrot in it, but I like adding more veggies to things where I can), four medium russet potatoes, sliced thinly, 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (or cayenne), and 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano. Continue cooking for about 5 minutes.


Add 3 (14 oz.) cans of chicken broth, and raise temperature to high until it starts to boil. Lower the temperature to low and simmer for about 10 – 15 minutes.


Add one cup of milk, one cup of half and half or cream, and the kale. Continue simmering for another 10 – 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.


Season with salt and pepper to taste.


Italian Sausage, Kale, and Potato Soup (Zuppa Toscana)

(serves 5 – 6)

  • 1 bunch kale
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 1 lb. turkey sausage (or Italian sausage)
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 4 medium russet potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 3 (14 oz.) cans chicken broth
  • 1 c. whole milk
  • 1 c. half and half or cream
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Wash kale, tear into small pieces. Set aside.
  2. Add a few lugs of olive oil to a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and saute for 2 – 3 minutes. Add turkey sausage and cook until browned.
  3. Add carrot, potatoes, red pepper, and oregano, and continue to saute for about 5 minutes.
  4. Add chicken broth, raise heat to high until boiling, then lower heat to a simmer. Simmer for about 10 – 15 minutes.
  5. Add milk, half and half (or cream), and kale, and continue simmering for another 10 – 15 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.
  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with fresh bread.



Entry filed under: Beef, Chicken, Italian food, Pork, Recipes, Soups/Stews. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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About Me

My name is Rachel. I'm a small-town girl born and raised in Oklahoma, currently living in Japan, who likes cooking, baking, reading, working out, and traveling. Join me in my culinary adventures, my domestic doings, and the story of my life, one day at a time.

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January 2012
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