nigel slater’s classic caldo verde

January 19, 2011

Please stop what you’re doing and make this soup!

I can hardly believe something so simple and quick can taste so massively delicious.

Caldo verde translates from the Portuguese to “green broth”. It’s a really simple combination (at least in its purest form) of potatoes, garlic, kale, and water. It’s one of those “peasant soups” you hear about that take leftovers or very basic ingredients and combine them to make something warm, filling and tasty. Food for hard times, for sure, but this dolled up version is lacking nothing in the flavour department, let me tell you.

Many people tart up that basic ingredient list by adding onion, smoked paprika and slices of chorizo, all of which I did.

You can also substitute the water for stock which I probably would have done this time but I had none on hand. Honestly, I quite liked how delicate it tasted, with just enough salt from the spicy sausage. Water does the trick perfectly, but stock would likely enhance the flavour fabulously too.

If you’d like to tart it up even more then you could add cooked cannellini beans or orzo for some extra oomph.

Oh, and all this in half an hour? That’s weeknight fare if you ask me.

Nigel Slater’s Classic Caldo Verde

via The Guardian


  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 3 or 4 large potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 33 oz (one litre, or a little over a quart) water or stock
  • 5 oz spicy sausage, thickly sliced
  • 2 generous handfuls of kale, finely shredded
  • pinch of smoked paprika
  • olive oil


  1. Cook the onion and garlic in a little olive oil for 2 minutes.
  2. Add the potatoes, sprinkle on some paprika and cook for a minute or two, then pour in your water or stock.
  3. Simmer for 20 minutes, until the potatoes are soft (if they break up then all to the good).
  4. Fry the sausage briefly in a nonstick pan. Remove the sausage, leaving the fat behind, and drop it into the soup.
  5. Stir the kale into the hot soup. Serve with a small pool of olive oil floating on the surface and a big hunk of crunchy bread. Serves 4.
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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Erica January 19, 2011 at 8:27 am

Soup makes the best weeknight dinner. Plus theres usually leftovers! Josh LOVES chorizo. I like that I could make this and add chorizo to his and none to mine- perfection!


Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) January 19, 2011 at 8:47 am

Oh my word, this sounds fabulous! I love simple, brothy soups. :D


emily (a nutritionist eats) January 19, 2011 at 2:53 pm

I love these kind of meals – so simple, yet so satisfying.


Lindsay January 20, 2011 at 1:25 am

This sounds like an amazing soup, would you recommend the use of chicken stock or beef stock. I am sorry that this might sound stupid, but I have no idea which would taste better! :)


Angharad January 20, 2011 at 10:18 am

Hi Lindsay! You know I think either would work fine but I never use beef stock so I would have to recommend either chicken or veggie stock. Let me know if you use beef stock how it turns out! Angharad


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