Here’s an extremely simple pureed soup that fits in nicely with Thanksgiving right around the corner. Everyone has their favorite part of the Thanksgiving dinner (mine is the stuffing, the turkey is just the vessel by which the stuffing is cooked in my opinion) and most of the time no one ever wants to mess with the traditional parts of the annual dinner like the turkey, mashed potatoes, and pies, myself included. Over the past few Thanksgiving dinners I’ve stuck with a traditional roast turkey, my grandmother’s stuffing (come back later in the week for the recipe for that…sausage is involved) and pumpkin pie. As good a base as any to build around. Cheryl’s fav is the green beans with fried onions so we’ve incorporated that into our traditional base as well. The rest of the sides are where I think you can get a little more creative and adventurous. Sweet potatoes are one side dish you can really branch out on. Here’s one variation that is so simple you can test it out the weekend before.
Given all the time you can potentially spend in the kitchen on Thanksgiving prepping and cooking, this soup is fast, simple, and can be made ahead (like many soups it does taste better the next day). You’ll need a food processor for the pureeing or one of these immersion blenders which I love when making a soup like this.
Once your sweet potatoes are cooked it will take less than 5 minutes to have your soup ready if you have one of those. This whole process literally takes about as long as it takes water to boil…with sweet potatoes in it of course. You can get 6-8 servings from this recipe.
- 1 lb Italian sausage (hot) in either loose or encased form
- 3 lbs sweet potatoes
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- Brown sugar (optional)
- Salt to taste (optional)
- Parsley for garnish
- Vermouth or sherry for finishing
Peel your sweet potatoes. Cut into medium sized chunks, around 1 ½ inch. Cover with water and set on stove on med- high heat, bring to boil, and cook until soft.
While you’re waiting for the potatoes to cook brown your sausage. If you didn’t buy the sausage in bulk form take a knife and make a slit the length of the casing, remove sausage from casing.
Brown sausage in a pan over med-med/high heat. Break up sausage into small pieces while browning. When browned, drain and set aside.
Now back to the sweet potatoes. Save the liquid! They’re cooked so now drain them, but drain them into another bowl in order to save the cooking liquid.
If you have an immersion blender put sweet potatoes back into the pot. If not you’ll probably have to do this in batches with your food processor (food mill, ricer, blender, whatever you use to puree).
Add 2 C of the cooking liquid to the potatoes; submerge mixer and start to puree. Add 1 more C of the liquid. Puree. Add one more C and puree. It should be a really smooth, not too thick but not too thin consistency. If you want it thinner add some more of that potato liquid until you get it to where you want it. 4 C of the liquid is where I draw the line.
Now stir in the 1 tsp of nutmeg. Fold in the crumbled sausage. Taste. Has the sausage added enough salt for you? I find it usually does but if not add a pinch or two of salt to your liking. Finish with a couple Tbs of sherry or dry vermouth. When serving garnish with some chopped parsley and sprinkle brown sugar on top.
Enjoy, and as always please feel free to comment with any questions or suggestions!