Soup Weather | RABBIT SAUSAGE SOUP WITH SWEET POTATO AND KALE and 15 more Austin food blogger bowlfuls

“There ain't a body, be it mouse or man, that ain't made better by a little soup.” ― Kate DiCamillo, The Tale of Despereaux
These are the times that try men's souls. Among the pews, on the news, at the malls, in the halls, watching debate, dodging hate. Baby, it's cold out there. And some days, in more ways than the thermometer measures. It's all just a little much some days.

Soup. It's certainly not the cure for all ills, but it's a darn fine place to start. A steaming pot, simmering away the afternoon, warms body, home and soul, Comforts one just long enough to bring us back to center. To remind us of the good in life, the love around us. Soup gives us a hug, brushes off the dust on our lapel, straightens our shoulders, and sends us back into the world a little stronger, a little wiser, a little more resilient, and ready for the world once more.
“Bad news should be followed with soup. Then a nap.” ― Augusten Burroughs

It was a rainy, blustery day at the farmers' market some weeks ago when I determined that the dish I had in mind to make was just too fussy. What I needed, what we all needed, was soul food. We needed soup. And as the rain pelted the chef demo tent, occasionally blowing in sideways to remind us that is was, indeed, miserable, a pot of soup simmered along, covered and undeterred.

Farmers' Market Favorite: 
Rabbit Sausage Soup with Sweet Potato and Kale
Serves 6-8

2 pints rabbit stock
1 pint water
2 larger sweet potatoes, sliced into matchstick lengths
1 bunch curly kale, stems removed, chopped
2 bunches (6 cloves plus greens) green garlic, chopped finely
½ bunch flat leaf parsley
Texas Hill Country Olive Company Garlic Infused Olive Oil
1 pound Countryside Farm Fresh Rabbit Sausage with Mustard (Seed) and Tarragon
1 pint plain Greek-style yogurt
Salt and Black Pepper, to taste

In a large soup pot, combine rabbit stock, water, sweet potato, kale, green garlic, and flat leaf parsley. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a rolling simmer, cooking until sweet potatoes are softened.

Meanwhile, cover bottom of a skillet with garlic-infused olive oil. Over medium heat, brown sausages on all sides, moving frequently to prevent sticking. Turn when each side is golden brown, browning on all 4 sides. Remove from pan, and cool for 5 minutes. Slice with a sharp knife into half inch thick slices, crosswise.

When sweet potatoes have softened (above), reduce heat to medium low, adding sliced sausage. Fold in Greek yogurt. Warm through (without boiling), and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Texas Farmers' Market vendor resources include

Realizing that some readers will be unable to access the local ingredients to which I have access, find below some suitable substitutions that will yield similar results.

Rabbit Stock: Substitute chicken stock.
Garlic-infused olive oil: Crush one large garlic clove and allow to slowly warm with oil on low temperature for 45 minutes. Or use plain olive oil and adjust green garlic, below.
Green Garlic: substitute 1 clove garlic, minced finely, combined with 1 bunch chives, minced.
Plain Greek yogurt: Any favorite plain, full-fat Greek-style yogurt
Rabbit Sausage with Mustard Seed and Tarragon: Use plain rabbit sausage with added mustard seed and tarragon, or chicken sausage with same seasonings.

A first-rate soup is more creative than a second-rate painting.--Abraham Maslow
And there's MORE!

I asked my peers with the Austin Food Blogger Alliance for links to favorite soups they have prepared, and they graciously showered me with LOADS of delicious! Follow the links below for a bounty of cold weather-inspired bowlfuls, and get to know a few of Austin's finest cooks, at the links, below.

Photos courtesy of the bloggers who provided each recipe, below. Thank you, Austin Food Blogger Alliance!

  1. Broccoli-Beer-Cheddar Soup from Full and Content
  2. Coconut Curry Beet Soup from Girl Gone Grits
  3. Favorite Fall Spiced Tomato-Pumpkin Soup from A Time To Kale
  4. French Onion Soup from Quarter Life (Crisis) Cuisine
  5. Green Chile Chicken Soup from Austin Urban Gardens
  6. Pho Ga (Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup) from Smoked Salt & Pepper
  7. Provençal Soupe au Pistou from Spoon & Ink
  8. Pumpkin Soup with Indian Spices from Baby Tastebuds
  9. Roasted Carrot & Fennel Soup from Stetted
  10. Roasted Cauliflower Soup from The Dig In
  11. Roasted Pumpkin-Poblano Soup from Yes, More Please!
  12. Spicy Corn Chowder from Stupid Good  
  13. Spicy Pork & Mustard Green Soup from Forks Up
  14. Spicy Sausage and Kale Soup from A Dash of Texas
  15. Zucchini Noodle Chicken Ramen from The Dishstance

“Each month is gay, each season nice, when eating chicken soup with rice” ― Maurice Sendak, Chicken Soup With Rice: A Book of Months

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