Smoked Sausage Potato Soup

This soup is a spin on the Portuguese Caldo Verde, but with the addition of saffron and smoked paprika instead. The recipe was a happy experiment and one that I've made quite a few times since, even though I have a slight aversion to cooking the same meal twice. The appeal of blistered potatoes in a deeply flavorful broth just can't be denied. 
I use smoked andouille sausage but please feel free to substitute chorizo or any other smoked sausage. Saffron is optional but it gives the potatoes a lovely golden glow and the broth a wonderful aroma. I was fortunate to receive quite a bit from friend recently and well, the rest is history.

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Ingredients:

2tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1lb smoked sausage, sliced (chorizo, andouille etc.)
1 medium yellow onion, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2tsp smoked paprika
1tsp red pepper flakes
6 medium potatoes, peeled + diced
8 cups chicken stock
Pinch of saffron (totally optional)
4 cups kale, spinach or collards

Method:

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add sausage and brown (3-5 minutes). Add onion, garlic, paprika + red pepper to the pot and sauté for 5 minutes until fragrant.

Add potatoes, stock & saffron. Lower heat and simmer until potatoes are very tender. Use the back of a fork to smash some of the potatoes against the side of the pot - This will thicken the soup & provide a creamier texture.

Add greens and simmer for 5 minutes more then serve.

I like to set some of the browned sausage aside in the beginning and add to the soup afterwards for crispy texture. I do not add extra salt as the stock and sausage is quite salty on their own, but please season to your taste afterwards.
Alternatively, sauté in the Instant Pot then add everything else & cook on high pressure for 8 minutes. Don’t skip mashing of some of the potatoes.

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