“Black Soup” could sound more enticing…


There is nothing remotely enticing about “black soup.” Of course, “chipped beef” wasn’t created by a marketing genius. Neither was spotted dick. The recipes however…simple and amazing!

Caldo negro is a classic Portuguese soup of kale and sausage. Cavolo nero, or lacinato kale is not the curly, frilly kale you may know, but has long, smooth-edged leaves. It also has a much more delicate texture. In short, it is fabulous and the first time I found it from Gardener’s Gourmet at Eastern Market, I just had to have it. Then I had to figure out what to do with it.

A Google search quickly revealed kale and Linguiςa soup. It’s so simple – onion, potatoes, kale, sausage and water. But that wasn’t good enough. Add brown chicken stock, and finish it with some rich butter and bright, warm sherry vinegar. The first time we made it we went running back to the kitchen for a second bowl. And I made another batch the very next day.


  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock*
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 2 Linguiςa Portuguese sausages**, skins removed, sliced, and sautéed
  • 1 pound Lacinato Kale*, ribs removed and cut in fine strips
  • 2 tbs butter
  • Sherry vinegar
*Brown chicken stock is amazing with this recipe, but it tastes amazing even with plain water.
**OMG this soup is too good NOT to make. Substitute Spanish Chorizo or even Andouille sausage for the Linguiςa. Use any kale you can get your hands on, but cut it into the finest ribbons you can.


  • Sauté onion in olive oil over medium heat in a 6-8 quart stock pot.
  • Add garlic, potatoes and a cup of stock,. turn heat to medium low and stew for 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, sauté sausage over med-high heat, browning on both sides.
  • Add remaining stock, bay and thyme. Simmer until potatoes can be mashed.
  • Mash potato in soup. Add sausage and simmer for five minutes.
  • Add kale and simmer 5 minutes
  • Season to taste with butter, vinegar, salt and pepper.

Start the second batch now. The first one will not last long.

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