Smoked linguica sausage. Tender, creamy white beans. Portuguese cabbage, sliced so thin it’s like a spider web in your bowl. This is what you do with your homemade linguica, especially if you happen to have wild boar linguica, as I did.
There are a lot of versions of the famous Portuguese soup caldo verde, and this one is inspired by a recipe from the Azores I found in my friend David Leite’s cookbook The New Portuguese Table. It’s a peasant stew, really. Heavy on beans (or potatoes, in most versions) and heavy on the cabbage, most versions skimp on the linguica and don’t use stock or broth — water is all.
I like that. I like the clarity of flavor you get with water, and with a stew that doesn’t have 50 ingredients in it. Sometimes, simple is better.
Portuguese Linguica Stew
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic chopped
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 pound linguica sausage, cut into large pieces
- 6 cups water
- 1/2 pound collard greens, stems removed and sliced very thin
- 1 15- ounce can cannellini beans or other white beans
- Ground black pepper
- Rinse the beans out thoroughly and set aside.
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat and saute the onions, stirring occasionally, until they just begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
- Add the white wine and cook this down by half.
- Add the bay leaves, red pepper flakes and water. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Add salt to taste. Cover, turn the heat to medium-low and simmer gently for 30 minutes.
- Uncover the pot and add the sausage, beans and collard greens. Cook for another 10 minutes. Serve with ground black pepper.