Here is my recipe for Caldo Verde. I started with a recipe from David Rosengarten (formerly host of the show "Taste" in the early days of the Food Network). I adapted it as best I could for ingredients readily available here on the Edge of the Great Dismal Swamp.
I hope you will try it!
6-8 CUPS OF WATER
6 CLOVES OF GARLIC, roughly chopped
6-8 RUSSETT POTATOES peeled and whole
2LB OR MORE OF SMOKED SAUSAGE cut into 5-6 inch pieces
(you can add ham or any other sausage you like, the more the better ...Canadian Bacon is good too)
2-4 LBS. OF KALE, washed and stemmed and sliced thinly
In a large pot, add the water, potatoes, sausage and garlic.
Bring it to a boil and cook on medium heat until potatoes are tender.
While that is cooking, wash the kale and remove all the large stems. Stack the leaves and roll them up.
Slice the rolls of kale very thin so that it looks almost like blades of grass.
When the potatoes are tender, remove the sausage (and any other meat you have added.)
And set aside to cool. When cool slice the sausage in to 1/4 inch slices. Set aside.
Break up the potatoes with a potato masher.
Don't try to make mashed potatoes, just break them up into small pieces.
Bring the potato mixture up to a hard boil for 10 minutes or so to bring out the starch in the potatoes and to thicken the soup.
Add the kale and reduce the heat to medium. Cook until the kale is tender.
Add the sausage slices and heat until everything is hot.
Serve immediately adding salt and pepper to taste.