Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Cold Weather brings Zuppa de Toscana Pollo

Happy Wednesday! It's a cool 51 degrees here in town and I gotta say, it's a little cold for me. If I have pants and a jacket on and I'm still cold, it's TOO cold. 

A friend and I were talking about Floridians (ourselves) and how people up North poke fun at us for bundling up and acting like we're in Alaska if the temp dips under 60 degrees. She went to Wisconsin over the Christmas break and her family up there was giving her crap about needing to turn the heat on at night, even though the temperature was getting below 60 inside. Then, I was telling her how we went to NYC in December one year and didn't get to enjoy the city because it was 2 degrees outside. Ain't nobody got time for that! We barely wanted to leave the hotel room.

Maybe we just don't have the right gear? Who knows...but listen people, if you live in Florida your entire life, anything under 60 degrees is cold! I don't care what you think! :)

Along with the weather, this week itself has been a shock to the system. Trying to get back to the "normal" routine has been tough and great at the same time. Although getting up to an alarm clock is never really fun, it feels good to have structure back in our lives. The holidays really screw with us, right?! Physically (weight gain/sugar addiction) and mentally (party after party after party).

So here it is, Wednesday, and I'm finally feeling back to "normal". The holiday junk food has been thrown out, our workouts and running have been consistent, and cooking healthy meals has returned. Ahhh, my life is back.

Last night I made a soup for dinner. I don't know why but every time the weather gets colder, I cook soup. Its just the right thing to do.

I wanted to make a copy cat recipe of Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana. I used to eat that soup ALOT when I worked at a doctor's office and Olive Garden was one of the few choices close by when ordering take out. It's a creamy soup with spicy sausage, kale, and russet potatoes. But instead, I made it with ingredients I had available: chicken, kale, and sweet potatoes. I'll call this one, Zuppa de Toscana Pollo. 

Zuppa de Toscana Pollo
What you’ll need:
2 large chicken breasts
2 tbsp EVOO
4 bunches fresh kale, stems removed and chopped
2 sweet potatoes, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 tbsp garlic, minced
6-8 cups chicken broth
2/3 cup half & half
Salt & Pepper

What you do:
Cook chicken however you prefer. I used FlavorGod Garlic Everything Seasoning and sautéed the chicken in a large frying pan.
Once chicken is fully cooked, chop into bite size pieces and set aside.
In a large soup pot, add EVOO over medium high heat.
Add onions and celery to pot and sautee for 5 minutes.
Add garlic, potatoes, kale, chicken, and chicken broth to pot. Stir and make sure potatoes are covered in the broth.
Bring to boil, reduce to a summer, and let cook until potatoes are tender. This should be no less than 30 minutes. (I let mine simmer for 2 hours)
Add salt, pepper to taste
Take off heat and stir in half&half.


1 comment:

  1. I could totally go for this soup on a "cold" (to us Floridians!) night!