If you are in need of a soup that warms you up all the way to your toes after a bone-chillingly cold day, then look no further. This soup is hands-down my favorite soup of all time for the very reason that it can warm the coldest bones better than a hot bath. This would also make an amazing Thanksgiving soup if you need to bring something to the family get-together. It makes a large pot, and can pretty much feed an army. Or if it's just for a couple of you, it's great for leftovers and lasts a good long while in the fridge.
I'll let the soup do the talkin'.
--1 lbs of smoked beef sausage, diced
--1 small white onion, peeled and diced
--3 32 oz. boxes of chicken broth
--1 heaping cup of uncooked brown rice
--8 oz. baby bella mushrooms, sliced
--4 cloves garlic, minced
--2 medium carrots, diced
--2 ribs celery, diced
--1 large (approx 1 lbs.) sweet potato, peeled and diced
--3 bay leaves
--2 Tbsp. Old Bay Seasoning
--Salt & pepper to taste
Wait until last 10 minutes of soup simmering for these ingredients:
--3 Tbsp. butter (1/2 stick)
--1 1/2 cup milk
--1/4 cup all purpose flour
--2 to 3 stalks of kale (chopped, thick stems removed)
1.Heat 1 Tbsp. (extra) butter in a large stock pot over medium-high. Add onion, saute 5 minutes, or until slightly softened. Stir in garlic and cook 2 more minutes.
2. Add broth, rice, mushrooms, carrots, celery, sweet potato, sausage, bay leaves, and Old Bay seasoning. Stir.
3. Let soup reach a simmer, reduce to medium-low, and cover for 45 minutes or until rice is soft.
4. During the last 10 minutes of the 45-minute simmer, prep cream sauce in a separate sauce pan. Cook butter until melted, whisk flour in until combined. Gradually add milk until mixture nearly simmers, stirring frequently until thick.
5. Add cream sauce to soup, whisking in the cream sauce until there are no more clumps.
6. Add kale (I suggest cutting the kale up with scissors; it makes that process much easier and faster!) and stir in gently.
Enjoy the warm, smoky, spicy goodness!