Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Rainy Day Soup - Vegetarian Style!

This soup is one of my specialties, one meal I can make without a recipe every time, the one I pull out when friends are sick or the weather outside is frightful. I wanted to make it for a group of friends last week when a few were getting sick, but the original version, which I swiped and adapted from Weight Watchers, calls for chicken sausage and chicken broth.

Now the broth I'd be happy to switch out for veggie, but the chicken sausage in this recipe is crucial. The spicy flavor of the soup comes directly from the andouille flavoring in the sausage, and without it, the entire soup would be land and would lack that kick that makes it a good healing soup. I wanted to make a vegetarian version, but didn't think I could find an acceptable sausage replacement.

But behold! The local co-op serves us well. I found a vegetarian chipotle sausage to use for the soup. It's a big grainier than the chicken version, and waaaay spicier. I usually add some hot sauce at the end, but this version didn't need it at all.

1 yellow onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 pkg spicy andouille or chipotle sausage, chicken or veggie (usually comes 4-5 sausages to a pack), sliced in thin rounds
6 cups or so of broth
1 baking potato
1 bag baby spinach
hot sauce, optional

Add the onion to a soup pot and cook on medium-high until it gets soft. Add the garlic, cook for a minute or two.

Add the sausage until it is browned in some places.

Add the broth. Don't need to boil, just get it really hot.

Once the broth is hot, remove the skin from the potato and grate the potato directly into the soup, using the smallest grating option. (This is the amazing part of the soup -- the potato melts and gets kind of creamy!)

Once the potato has melted a bit, add the spinach to the broth. Let it wilt a bit.


You can add salt and pepper along the way too, I'm just never sure how much I add.

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