Sausage, Kale, and Sweet Potato Soup

I love making soup because it’s a simple meal on its own. Usually, a big pot of soup will last a few days, so it supports my philosophy of  Cook Once, Eat Twice! 

This flavor-rich and healthy soup would be perfect to make ahead for your weekly lunches.

It’s also super easy and comes together in about 30-40 minutes from start to finish. The flavors are similar to an Italian sausage soup, but with no beans, tomatoes, or dairy.

Sausage, Kale, and Sweet Potato Soup (prep time 5 minutes, cook time 30-40 minutes) 6-8 servings

  • 1 lb. spicy Italian sausage (casings removed)
  • 1 bag of pre-washed, chopped kale (about 6 cups) The chopped bag of kale at Trader Joes is perfect
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3 TBS olive oil
  • 3-4 medium sweet potatoes, chopped into bite-sized pieces. (no need to peel)
  • 1 TBS dried Oregano
  • 1 TBS dried Basil
  • 1/2 TBS nutmeg
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 TBS red pepper flake
  • 1 TBS sea salt
  • 1 TBS freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 quarts of chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar with the mother 

Directions

  • Add 2 TBS of olive oil to a heavy bottomed soup pot. I use a dutch oven. Heat oil over medium-high heat and then add garlic. Sauté garlic for a minute then add onion. Sauté onions and garlic for a couple minutes until onions just begin to soften. Add some of the salt and pepper.
  • Add diced sweet potatoes. You might need to add a little more olive oil.
  • Continue sautéing and stirring constantly until sweet potatoes start to soften a little bit.
  • Add sausage and break it up into chunks while stirring and incorporating into sweet potatoes.
  • Add all spices.
  • Continue cooking everything until the sausage is cooked all the way through.
  • Add the whole bag of kale.
  • You might want to add a tsp of olive oil here too.
  • Stir until the kale starts to wilt.
  • Add apple cider vinegar.
  • Stir to cook off vinegar a little bit.
  • Add the chicken stock, and stir.
  • Turn down heat to medium-low and taste. Season to taste with more salt and pepper, oregano, basil, and red pepper flake if desired.
  • Put the lid on the pot and simmer for 10-15 minutes until the sweet potatoes are fork tender.
  • Cool to room temperature before storing in the refrigerator.

Please let me know if you make this!

Photo credit: Rosario Vila, thanks again Ro!

#ArtisanAngelaCooks

 

Roast Pork Loin with Garlic Apple Cider Au Jus

Roast pork loin for dinner is a delicious and easy way to cook up something a little different during the week or can make an impressive main dish while hosting dinner guests.

You can also make this ahead and include in your Sunday meal-prep repertoire. It’s delicious and easy to re-heat and serve in just a few minutes.

P.S. Check out my photo gallery at the bottom. My amazing friend and talented photographer, Rosario Vila, captured me in action creating this recipe. Thanks, Ro!

Roast Pork Loin with Garlic Apple Cider Au Jus 

This recipe makes enough to for two main course dinners (Serving 4-5 people for each dinner). If you only want to cook one pork loin, just halve the recipe. My motto is Cook Once, Eat Twice!

  • 2 large pork loins about 2.5 lbs. each
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/3-1/2  cup apple cider vinegar (use the kind with ‘the mother’)
  • 2 TBS dried thyme
  • 1 TBS sea salt
  • 1 TBS course ground black pepper
  • 2 TBS olive oil

Directions (5 mins prep, 20-25 min cooking time)

  • Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. Put top oven rack in the middle position.
  • Drizzle 1 TBS of the olive oil over the pork and then rub to cover. Sprinkle spices all over the pork loins, be generous on both sides.
  • Heat dutch oven or large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add remaining 1 TBS olive oil.
  • Add garlic and sauté for about 1 minute.
  • Put both loins in the pan and brown for about 3-4 minutes until they are well browned. Flip over using tongs and brown the other side. 
  • About 1 minute before that last side is browned add the apple cider vinegar to help de-glaze the pan.
  • Lift up the loins to let the apple cider vinegar get under there.
  • Continue to brown for another minute or two.  You want to have a little liquid in the pan before you put it in the oven, so add more apple cider vinegar if you need to.
  • Place the pan right in the oven, uncovered and cook for about 20 minutes.
  • Use a meat thermometer to test for doneness. I like our pork cooked medium with a pink center and it’s done when it is about 145 degrees.
  • Pull it out of the oven and tent with aluminum foil and let rest.
  • If you are eating it right away, let it rest for 10 minutes right in the pan.
  • Slice pork in 1/2 inch pieces and drizzle the juice from the pan over the slices and serve.
  • If you are storing for later just wrap each loin in aluminum foil or put in a glass baking dish with a lid and make sure you save that juice in the bottom of the pan!

If you like this recipe, let me know, and better yet, share it with the world!

#ArtisanAngelaCooks

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Carnitas

Today I am meal prepping for the week. My husband leaves tonight for a business trip and that means I will be on my own with three kids trying to manage work, getting them to and from school, and feeding them! I also have three separate day trips for my own job this week. Nothing like a challenge!

Having all the food cooked ahead of time will make everything easier.

Today I am making beef carnitas. I have been making variations of this recipe for about 5 years. I love making it for guests and it’s a good one to make ahead of time and eat on all week. I have never written down the recipe as it usually changes to whatever I have in my pantry, but today I’ll give it a go!

Beef Carnitas (Time: 15 minutes prep, 5 hours cook)

  • 1 3-4 lb chuck roast (you can also use pork butt, which is very tasty as well)
  • 3 TBSP ground cumin
  • 3 TBSP chili powder
  • 3 TBSP dried oregano
  • 1 large clove of garlic, chopped
  • 1 TBSP Coconut oil or olive oil (can use any oil really)
  • 1/2 cup of stock (I always use veggie stock, but chicken or beef would work too)
  • 3 TBSP apple cider vinegar
  • 4 TBSP fresh citrus – orange or lime juice ( I used orange today)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 can diced tomatoes or 1 small can of green chilis (the key is to use something acidic. Normally I use the green chilis, but didn’t have any today and have used diced tomatoes in the past and it tastes great)

You will need a heavy bottomed pot. I use a Lodge brand dutch oven. Turn the heat on to medium high and let the pot get nice and hot. Add the 1 TBS coconut oil and once that melts add the diced garlic. While the garlic is getting nice and brown, generously salt and pepper both sides of the roast. Place the roast in the pot and let brown for about 4-5 minutes, flip over and brown the other side.  While the roast is browning, mix together the tomatoes or chiles, spices, stock and citrus juice in a small bowl.

While the roast is browning, mix together the tomatoes or chiles, spices, stock and citrus juice in a small bowl. Once the second side of the roast is nice and brown, pour the mixture over the roast, and make sure it gets underneath it as well. Let that cook for about a minute. Then you transfer the roast to a crock pot. Pour the sauce from the pot over the roast in the crock pot. Make sure you have some sauce under the roast. Cook on high for about 5 hours. I usually flip it half way through cooking, but you don’t have to. It will be done when you can easily stick a fork all the way through and it almost falls apart.

Once the roast is done, shut off crock pot and then transfer the roast to a plate and let cool about 5 minutes. Shred the roast with 2 forks and try to remove the excess fat clumps. Put the shredded meat back in the crock and stir everything around.

Now, serve as desired. I try to eat clean, so today I ate this with some fresh baby greens, roasted peppers onions and zucchini topped with a little feta cheese and hot sauce. It’s like a carnita bowl. Or you could serve with brown rice, some diced avocado and roasted peppers and onions.

However, the tastiest way is to serve with a tortilla, feta cheese, a little-chopped onion, lime juice, avocado, and some hot sauce on top! You could also make nachos with it, the list goes on and on.

Hope you enjoy!

Artisan Angela