I love Saturday mornings, waking up around 4:00 a.m, drinking my coffee, reading news on various blogs and websites.  I've become very protective of this time, using the time to try to re-charge after a hectic week of commuting back and forth to work.  

I also spend part of this time plotting what to make for upcoming meals for the week.  As we speak, I have dried garbanzo beans soaking in water to make some salads,  chicken is defrosting so I can steam it, and shred it for salads, and I have a big ripe papaya ready to cut up for smoothies for breakfest for the week.

But one of my favorite things to do on a Saturday morning is make a pot of soup.  It keeps well in the fridge for a quick dinner during the week and it's something I like taking to work for lunch as well.  

There is one soup that has pretty much become a staple of mine.  I keep a fresh jar of it in the fridge on a weekly basis and also keep bags of it frozen in my freezer for lunches, unexpected company, etc.  I really don't have a name for it but I'll share the recipe with you and urge you to give it a try.  I think it's pretty tasty, and it's loaded with anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals so it's good for your heart and your soul.

So, here is the recipe - I have a tendency not to really measure things so it comes out a bit different each time, but I kind of like that as well.  And remember, you always make changes/substitutions so let your pallet be your guide:

64 ounces of chicken stock (I use low sodium/low fat)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 very large shallot (onions work too!)
1 large red bell pepper (any color of your choice)
1 whole head of Tuscan/Dinosaur Kale
1 large can of diced tomatoes
1 large Thai chilli or 3 small cayenne peppers
1 teaspoon of tumeric
Fresh ground black pepper

1. Place a large stock pot on top of your stove and place on medium high heat and add olive oil and some fresh ground pepper
2. Chop shallot and add to pot, and saute for 2-3 minutes, then cut heat back to medium
3. Chop red pepper and add to pot and saute for two minutes
4. Pull kale from stalks and chop into thin ribbons, add to pot and saute for three minutes
5. Add large can of tomatoes to pot, stir, then add in chicken stock and tumeric and bring to boil, then add lid and cut back to simmer.
6. While soup simmers, take a knife and score the sides of the peppers, so you slice the pepper from top to bottom, without cutting through the pepper, and add to pot.  By scoring the pepper, you release some heat/flavor, but not too much.  And scoring keeps the seeds inside the pepper, preventing too much heat from being released.
7. Simmer for about a half hour, stirring occasionally, them taste and adjust seasoning  to you likeness.  

And that is it!  I store it in a large glass jar with a lid and It's is usually gone before the end of the week.  I usually have some crusty bread or some good whole wheat crackers with this for lunch, and I have a small cup with my dinner as well.  It tastes good, and it's good for you so give it a try and maybe it will become a staple in your kitchen as well.  

Tuscan/Dinosaur kale is pictured on the right, curly kale on the left, in the link below,  if you are not familiar with the Tuscan kale.  Either works well, it's just a taste preference, with the Tuscan kale being a bit milder.



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