Tablescapes, Home Decor, Thrifting, Cooking

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Is there anything better than good soup in January

 Call me crazy but almost always when dining at Olive Garden I order their Zuppa Toscana soup, salad and bread.  Something about the flavors of this warm bowl of goodness really appeals to me.  I love their salad too.

We always have soups on Christmas Eve.  The norm is chili and oyster stew.  This year we were having a few extra people.  Personally not liking oyster stew and liking chili okay ~~ I was more than happy to offer bringing another variety of soup this year.  For some reason Zuppa Toscana popped into my mind.

Do you know about the website copykat?  It has recipes that you might taste in restaurants and wish you could duplicate at home.  It had been quite some time since I thought to visit this site, but it did not let me down.  Within seconds I had at my fingertips the recipe I was looking for, complete with excellent reviews.

Joining Michael and so many good goods for Foodie Friday I am happy to share this recipe I found:

Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana is a creamy potato soup. It is filled with Italian sausage and is hard to beat.

Olive Garden Zuppa Toscana

Yield: 8 servings.

*See note below
1 1/2 C. spicy sausage links — 12
2 medium potatoes, cut in half lengthwise, and then cut into 1/4″ slices
3/4 C. onions, diced
6 slices bacon
1 1/2 tsp. minced garlic
2 C. kale leaves, but in half, then sliced
2 T. chicken base
1 qt. water
1/3 C. heavy whipping cream

**See note below   1/2 teaspoon fennel seed

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Place sausage links onto a sheet pan and bake for 25 minutes, or until done; cut in half length-wise, then cut at an angle into 1/2 inch slices.
Place onions and bacon in a large saucepan and cook over medium heat until onions are almost clear. Remove bacon and crumble. Add garlic to the onions and cook an additional 1-minute. Add chicken base, water, and potatoes, simmer 15 minutes. Add crumbled bacon, sausage, kale and cream. Simmer 4 minutes and serve.

* A few changes I made ~~~First of all I came close to doubling all the ingredients since I felt like I wanted plenty.  Instead of link sausage I used one roll of Jimmy Dean's Hot sausage that I browned. 

**It was suggested by a reader to include 1/2 t. Fennel Seed which I did, doubling this as well.  This really added to the flavor, so I strongly suggest you add it.

My family really seemed to enjoy this recipe and some asked for the recipe, so I think you will like it if this soup appeals to you.  Hey, it's another way to get your deep dark greens in!

How is everyone doing with organizing by now?  It came to my mind a cleaning/organizing method a friend shared with me years ago.  I have never tried it but was always intrigued by it.  She would take one room a month to totally clean and organize.  She would do a thorough job of cleaning from the ceiling fan to the crevices in the corners of the closet.  I'm sure some rooms wouldn't take a month while others might take a month and a half.  It seems like it might be worth a try.  By the fall or year end depending on the size of your house, everything would have a good going over.  Anyone want to try this??

We just got a new computer over the holidays and I am still trying to figure things out.  I have no pictures on this new PC and I'm haven't even tried downloading any.  I am very excited to have something with this amount of speed!  The old one was painfully slow and hard to pull up blogs for a quick peek.

Til next time...back to our cleaning, people!


Blondie's Journal said...

I have never had the soup there, but from looking at the recipe, it sounds delicious! I'd love to look up recipes this website, what a great place!! Thanks so much, I am going to try the soup next time I am at Olive Garden! :-)


Anonymous said...

ya know.... I had forgotten about CopyKat. Don't tell anyone but I have a passion for the drink Yoohoo. I got their recipe for it years ago and now make my own.'s a secret. xoxo Lynn

Paula@SweetPea said...

This soup looks really good! I like something with a short ingredient list like this one. I'm putting this on my "to try" list.

My organizing came to a screaming halt on Tuesday when I went back to work. I probably won't get any more accomplished until the next snow day.

Unknown said...

Sweet!!! This is my hubby's favorite soup at Olive Garden. I will have to give it a try one of these days.

Pattie @ Olla-Podrida said...

Soup and January go hand-in-hand. This sounds yummy. Thanks for the recipe.

Pamela said...

Zuppa is our favorite. My husbands loves soups so I experiment lots. The latest was potato with chicken. So good. Thank you for sharing the zuppa recipe!

the cape on the corner said...

i love a good soup in cold weather, especially a creamy soup. we had snow this morning, so this would be perfect for today!

thanks so much for stopping by, and for your sweet comment on my new thrifty dishes. i truly appreciate it!

Miss Char said...

That is my favorite at OG too Donna. Since I'm home with a sick husband today maybe I'll give this recipe a try. It's very cold here today and soup would certainly hit the spot.

Terri Steffes said...

Yummy! This looks awesome. I will definitely give it a try. I am your newest follower!

Cathy said...

Sounds good! I have a pot of veggie and venison soup on the stove.

Donnie said...

That soup and your changes sound delicious. I'm not decluttering right now. Just Chillin after the holidays.

Nana's Nuggets said...

Hi! Donna, This soup is awesome, in fact just had a bowl today!! I took my sis to Doctor's appt. and Tyler Texas has a Olive garden, I made myself sick! I love this soup, and I am so excited to have the recipe! really never thought about it!! will check out this web-site! Love new things to fiX! Have a good wk-end! Share more recipe's as well! Thanks!

Melissa Miller said...

Yum! This soup sounds beyond delicious Donna. You're making me hungry. Mmmm....:)

Happy New Year sweet friend! Your blog looks fresh and ready for the new year too. *Smiles*

Warmly, ~Melissa :)

Nana's Nuggets said...

Hi! donna, thank you for the cute comment you left in regards to grandson's expression! I have no idea what Rowdy was doing! this child always has a "surprize" for us!:) Blessings for a Sweet Sunday!

Confessions of a Plate Addict said...

Oh Donna...This is my favorite soup in the word! Thanks for the recipe...I'm gonna need it! I hope you are warm and cozy today! We are expecting snow and ice!...hugs...Debbie

Michelle said...

YUM! I love Olive Garden's soup and sald so much. I am saving this recipe!

Debbiedoos said...

That is awesome, I have never heard of that website. Oh but I love that soup!

vignette design said...

That soup would be wonderful on this cold winter day! Thanks for the recipe. Oh and by the way, your red plaid lunch box is probably a collector's item. You should do a post on it so I can see it! ~Delores

Mari said...

Thanks for stopping at my site.
I've been to that recipe site and it's good. I went their for another Olive garden soup - Pasta E Fagioli. I had good results too!

Justabeachkat said...

Thanks for the website. I'll have to check it out.

Oh, your soup looks delish. I'll make a copy and try it soon.

Thanks for your visit tonight.