When you just want a comforting light meal that is full of flavours and rich in nutrients you just think of this Portuguese traditional soup. It is considered by many to be Portugal’s national dish, and you can find it pretty much anywhere in Portugal. It’s an extremely versatile dish as you can have it as a one-course meal at lunch or as a light supper in the evening. The most important thing is choosing the right kale and cutting it the right way.
I have seen many recipes for ‘caldo verde’ all over the internet. Most of them completely seem to lose the essence of this dish. But being a Portuguese, has helped to share with you what I think it’s the closest to the authentic recipe.
The main differences from the original dish, is that it is often garnished with Portuguese chouriço (smoked pork sausage) and made with potatoes. My version is absolutely meat free, therefore no chouriço, and a little lighter as I have replaced some of the potatoes with the same amount of courgettes, which doesn’t seem to make any difference in terms of flavours and texture.
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Enjoy the creamiest and greenest of the soups. ‘Bom apetite!’
- 1 medium potato chopped
- 2 – 3 medium courgettes chopped
- 1 medium onion3 garlic cloves
- 1000ml of water (adjust the amount of water depending on how creamy or thick you want your soup to be)
- 300 gr kale or cavolo nero
- 3 tbsp. of olive oil
- 2 1/2 Tsp. salt
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- a dash of sugar
- Start by preparing all your vegetables: chop onions, garlic, potato and courgettes. Finely slice the kale (slice it as finely as you can).
- Then, in a large saucepan over medium heat, cook onion and garlic in 2 tablespoons olive oil until they start getting yellow. Stir in chopped potato and courgettes and cook, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes. Pour in water, bring to the boil, and let boil gently for 20 minutes, until the vegetables are soft.
- Puree the vegetable mixture with a blender or food processor. Stir in salt and pepper into the soup and return to medium heat. Cover and simmer 5 minutes.
- At the same time, on a smaller saucepan, add some boiling water and add the kale with a little dash of sugar (the sugar will make the kale greener and tastier). Let it cook for 5 minutes until tender.
- Just before serving, stir kale (only kale – not the water) into the soup and simmer, 5 minutes. Stir in the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and serve at once.
- If you want to give it a spicier kick (closest to the original recipe) serve the soup with chouriço (the soya alternative one).