I love the pairing of creamy beans with hearty greens. I developed this particular soup a couple of years ago; its lingering memory makes me eager to recreate it year after year, with a few small variations. (Let’s just say I added too much beer one year. A coworker walked into the breakroom while I was reheating some for lunch and asked if I was drinking. She was disappointed to learn it was just soup.)
The inspiration for this soup: On the one hand, we have frijoles borrachos, (drunken beans) a simple and addictive Mexican dish featuring pinto beans simmered with onions, garlic, chiles, beer, and a smoked meat such as bacon. (A savory side dish that’s wonderful in its own right.) On the other hand, Caldo Verde is a traditional Portuguese soup consisting of greens (usually kale) and spicy sausage (usually linguica), in broth, along with onions and garlic.
In this soup, I combine the two concepts into one satisfying bowl. I like to sub chard for the kale because the beautiful rainbow chard leaves at the Farmer’s Market are often irresistible. —indieculinary
spicy cured pork sausages, such as linguica or andouille
washed greens, such as rainbow chard or dino kale