Great-Grandma Marilyn requested Italian Potato Sausage Soup for her birthday lunch yesterday. The recipe originated with my mom’s friend, Mary Smeed, who is legendary for her cooking and entertaining. You can serve the soup with some oyster crackers or a nice crusty loaf of bread and they’ll be lining up to kiss the chef.
Here’s the recipe, but first let me say that creative cooks like Mary can be vague when it comes to quantities. I’ve tried to be as specific here as possible, but don’t be afraid to add a little more half-and-half if your soup looks too thick.
Another thing is that Mary’s original recipe makes 50 servings. I’ve halved the ingredients, which’ll still give you enough soup to feed a small army or big family!
Italian Potato Sausage Soup
5 pounds potatoes
1-1/2 pounds bulk Italian sausage
about 32 ounces chicken stock (just enough to cover the potatoes)
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 package celery, chopped
10 ounces frozen chopped spinach
1 to 1-1/2 pints half-and-half (you can use regular or reduced fat; my mom has used both and says she can’t tell the difference)
Boil the potatoes, onion, and celery in the chicken stock until tender. (You might need to add some water if the chicken stock doesn’t cover the potatoes.) Meanwhile, fry the Italian sausage until browned. Add the sausage and frozen spinach to the potatoes.
Thin with a pint of half-and-half. If the soup seems too thick, add a little more. Season with salt and pepper and simmer for half an hour.