Drooling my face off over this one.
Whenever I go to Olive Garden, I always happily devour a bowl of this soup.
Every. Single. Time.
There's plenty of other wonderful things on the menu I could order, and each more delicious than the last. But I always come back to a delicious serving of Zuppa Toscana. It's annoying, really. How can such a simple little soup have so much power over me? It has me so perfectly wrapped around each savory spoonful - so much, in fact, that I have to make the dang soup at home between Olive Garden visits (which are far between, unless we have a gift card). Obsessed much?
This recipe tastes 100% like I walked into the restaurant and left with a bowl full. The creamy smokey taste of the initial spoonful, then the spicy aftertaste from the sausage and red pepper flakes only make you wish you had a bigger spoon for the next helping. Plus, there's greens! You get your serving of kale - check that one right off your veggie list today. I also found these beautiful baguettes of ciabatta bread at the supermarket to serve along with it.
It was heaven.
I really have nothing else to say - the soup has and always will speak for itself. If you've ever had a bowl of it, you know exactly what I'm talking about.
Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana
makes about 6 servings
5-7 slices of bacon
1/2 lb hot Italian Sausage
5 medium russet potatoes, washed and thinly sliced
2 C kale, chopped
1 C heavy whipping cream
1 qt water
2 cans chicken broth
1/2 large onion, finely chopped
4 medium cloves of garlic, minced
2 t red pepper flakes
salt and pepper
grated Parmesan for sprinkling
1. On a greased cookie sheet, lay bacon flat and bake for about 15 minutes in a 400 degree oven. Flipping with a fork halfway between. Drain bacon, and crumble.
2. In a pan over medium high heat, cook sausage until it's heated thoroughly, and there's no pink. Drain very well on a paper towel (or else you'll have grease floating in your soup.) Set aside.
3. In your soup pot over medium heat, cook the potatoes, onion, garlic, chicken broth, and water until potatoes are cooked through.
4. Throw in cooked sausage, half the bacon, red pepper flakes, and salt & pepper. Simmer for about 10 minutes.
5. Add in kale and cream. Let soup heat through and serve with the other half of the bacon. Sprinkle with Parmesan.
Recipe source: Mom on Timeout, who was inspired by Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana recipe