Ecosalon Recipes: Potato and Kale Soup with Parsley-Arugula Pesto


After the indulgences of the holidays, you’re probably thinking about eating lightly over the next few weeks. But if you’re like me, your body isn’t craving raw salads and steamed greens over brown rice; it wants hot, nourishing foods that are still light. I want soup!

Here’s an easy soup that comes together in a snap. If you have some homemade chicken or vegetable broth in your freezer, all the better. But feel free to use an organic brand of whichever you prefer.

Potato and Kale Soup with Parsley-Arugula Pesto

Serves 2 or 3

PhotobucketSoup Base:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small organic onion, chopped
2 organic celery stalks, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 quart organic chicken or vegetable broth
3 or 4 small waxy organic potatoes, cut into bite sized pieces
2 bunches of kale (any variety) cut into ribbons
Salt and pepper to taste

PhotobucketTo make:

In a large soup pot, over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion, celery and garlic along with a little salt and sauté, stirring, until vegetables are soft and fragrant (about 10 minutes). Add the broth and the potatoes and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer until potatoes are tender (about 20 minutes) Add the kale and salt and pepper to taste and continue to simmer until the kale is tender but still bright green.

PhotobucketWhile the soup simmers, make the pesto:

Feel free to add other herbs like basil, marjoram or cilantro, whatever is in season or growing in your own herb garden.


1/2 cup washed and dried Italian parsley leaves
1 cup arugula
1 clove garlic
Salt to taste
Olive oil

PhotobucketTo make:

Pound the herbs, garlic and salt together in a mortar with a pestle until finely chopped. Add olive oil to desired consistency. You may also use the small bowl of your food processor. Serve the soup hot with a generous dollop of the green pesto on top and a flurry of good Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Recipe Copyright 2009 Vanessa Barrington

Image copyright: ostwestwind

Vanessa Barrington

Vanessa Barrington is a San Francisco based writer and communications consultant specializing in environmental, social, and political issues in the food system.