When I interviewed Noah Przybylski from Capitol Lakes several weeks ago, he was really excited about this recipe. To give you some background, both Noah and I grew up in very small towns. We were even in the same Division 4 conference! So when he told me that growing up, it was a ‘big’ thing to go to Appleton and go to Olive Garden, I totally got it. Those of you who live in cities or big towns probably shudder at chains, but for those of us who only get local places, chains seem really cool when you are a kid.

Anyways, Noah told me about this soup and that it was his version of Olive Garden’s Potato Rustica soup. It’s his tribute to those rare treks to the ‘big city’ where he could eat breadsticks and soup all the time knowing that across the country, there were other people eating the same breadsticks and soup. Again, when you’re a kid from a small town, that’s really cool.

After making the soup, I can say that Olive Garden has nothing on Noah Przybylski. After this you will be saying ‘Olive what?’ and ‘Ladle me up some more soup.’

I do admit that I took a big shortcut. Noah provided a recipe to make your own sausage. Now in my defense, I assumed I would have to grind it. I guess this is where the whole ‘reading the directions’ comes in to play. Have I mentioned that things have been a little crazy here? I bought fennel sausage but could have saved some money if I would have made this yummy version below. This is just one reason that I will be making this soup again.

Fennel Sausage

1 tablespoon of salt
2 tablespoons of sugar
1 teaspoon of peppercorn
1 1/2 tablespoon crushed fennel seed
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 lb of ground pork

Combine all ingredients together.

Gosh, wasn’t that easy?

Don’t I feel sheepish that I bought sausage?

And now for the big number…..

Noah’s Kale Potato Rustica Soup

2 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion
2 quart chicken stock
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup roasted red peppers (small dice)
2 bunches of Kale, roughly chopped, no stems
3 medium potatoes (Russet or Idaho), medium dice
1 pound of sausage

Salt to taste
Grated Parmesan



Note: You can use roasted red peppers in a jar. I decided to roast the red peppers myself because it’s just so easy.

  1. In a large soup pot, heat oil on medium high heat. Add sausage and cook until browned.
  2. Add onion and cook for 5 minutes until onions are soft.
  3. Add stock and heavy cream. Bring to simmer. Lower heat to medium. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. Add roasted red peppers, kale and potatoes. Simmer on medium heat for 45 minutes until everything is tender.
  5. Season with salt to taste, 1/4- 1/2 teaspoon.
  6. Serve with grated parmesan cheese.

Recipe Review: And now continue the confessions. First, I have already told you that I bought my sausage.



Confession #2: I don’t know much about potatoes, but I am going to take a gander and say that I don’t think these are the right potatoes.


They tasted awesome. They just look a little strange. They were in my CSA and I was really surprised to cut them and see purple. Again, reading the information card with the CSA share probably would have been helpful. This really has been a crazy time here in the Manatee and Badger Girl household.

And now the big confession. These first two substitutions are forgivable but it’s at this point, I know poor Noah is just going to shake his head because I went against his sage cooking advice: I swapped out an ingredient of, what could be argued, lesser quality.

For shame!

Here is a picture of Noah so you can visualize him shaking his head at me.

And since he is a nice guy, I am sure he would be smiling as he shook his head.

Here goes, I am going to say it fast to minimize the pain, kind of like ripping off a band aid.


The result? It still tasted amazing, but I think it would have been a prettier soup had I used the cream. And not used purple potatoes.

Okay now that I have confessed, let’s move on

Recipe Review: This soup was awesome. I mean, really it doesn’t have many ingredients and look at all the good stuff you are getting:

What really surprised me about the soup was how much of an impact the roasted red peppers had on the taste. You don’t use a ton, but it just adds the pop of sweetness with the soup.

Another thing that surprised me was how much better the soup got each day. The soup lasted three days in our house (mainly because Manatee wasn’t around for dinner two nights) so I was eating it on my own. Each day it the flavors were more intense. We will definitely be making it again and next time, (Noah, I promise) we will use all of the exact ingredients.



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