Zuppa Toscana: Karen’s Recipe


My sweet friend and co-worker, Karen, shared her Zuppa Toscana recipe with me because she knew I had been craving it. (Pretty bad when you have been talking about soup so much at work!)

To honor Karen’s fiery personality (she’s a saucy firecracker, I tell ya!), I used hot and spicy Italian chicken sausage from Trader Joe’s. The sausage also had some vino in it so I didn’t need to add the wine, which was optional in Karen’s recipe. Nor did I add the pancetta, but I bet it would be delicious!

Here’s what you need:
2 oz. pancetta or 1 T. real bacon bits
1 c. chopped onion (I used sweet)
1 T. garlic, chopped
1 lb. turkey Italian sausage (or whatever)
1-1/2 c. sliced potatoes
4 c. chicken stock
2 c. chopped kale (I used 2-1/2 c.)
1 c. fat free half and half (or fat free evaporated milk)
3 T. white wine (optional)

Here’s what you do:
1. Sauté pancetta, add garlic and onion. Add sausage, sliced. Cook until browned through. Drain, if needed.
2. Add chicken stock and potatoes. Cook 3/4 way till potatoes are done.
3. Add wine and kale, simmer 10 minutes then reduce heat and add half and half. Do not boil.
4. Serve immediately.

Note: Karen adds more oregano, parsley and fennel seed if wanted.

Fortunately, I didn’t need to add more seasonings because of the well-flavored chicken sausage I used. And, I didn’t drain the small amount of grease before I added the rest of the ingredients but I did add the first cup of broth and deglaze the pan. All of that savory goodness mixed in perfectly!

Yum! Thanks so much, Karen! You are a culinary goddess. 😉

On a workout note, I completed Day 30 of the Ab/Squat Challenge: 40 sit-ups, 100 crunches and 100 squats.

Woohoo! Hurts so good.

I also met my personal goal to increase my workout and desire to workout during the month of January. As a reward, I joined a local gym that I had been eyeing for a little bit. I have been twice since I joined Friday and this Friday I will have an assessment with a trainer. I am excited to see how I am assessed. To say the least.


Here’s a selfie from Saturday night’s date night. Hubby and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary Sunday. More about what I have learned (and need to learn) about marriage next week.

I think it’s time to take my measurements again. 🙂


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