Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Soup Month -- Day 8

Found my camera -- can you tell?
Dinner was so awesome, I decided to post an actual recipe!

Meatball Stew
1 bell pepper, chopped big
1 onion, chopped big
1 lb. sliced mushrooms
4 carrots, chopped big
4 potatoes, same size as your carrots
1 can beef broth
1 lb. frozen meatballs

I boiled the carrots and potatoes in the broth until they were almost done, and sauteed the first three veggies in another pan, though I don't think it's necessary, I just love the smell of hot onions in oil. Put the mushroom mix in the potato pot and turn to low. If it's covered it will steam them more so they won't be crunchy, it's up to you. I microwaved the meatballs and then sauteed them, too! The browned effect is more appetizing... I added about a tablespoon of cornstarch mixed with water to thicken the broth, and threw in some worcestershire sauce and montreal steak seasoning per Sheridy's suggestion. It was awesome!! Serve on rice if you wanna, but it's good without, too.

Soup Month -- Days 7 & 8

Last night we had Christmas Eve Clam chowder (found here), only better. Yep, Better! We used this stuff:

Clamless clam chowder, and it was good. No chewy chewy chewy chewy. Clam juice is found at the same place as clams and costs the same as two cans of chewy chewy, so what are you waiting for? Finally, we can completely enjoy one of my favorite soups without my least favorite component!

Tonight is going to be a good memory. When my second daughter was born, the best neighbors on Earth brought us dinner. They are angels in the flesh and not just because of the good stew! Sherrie told me to put a bunch of veggies in a pot (which I remember to be bell peppers, onions, mushrooms, potatoes, carrots and maybe green beans), then cook them with a can of beef broth. Heat up some frozen meatballs and toss them in. Then we ate it on rice. Not an actual soup, but a lot like beef stew, and SOOOO good!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Soup Week -- Days 5 & 6

Saturday we had chili, our favorite version with lots of brown sugar, 'cause hubby likes it sweet. Sunday was leftovers! We had a pint or so of four different soups, so it was a buffet. Okay, it wasn't a buffet, Mom and Dad claimed the ones they wanted and the kids settled for leftover chicken and dumpling soup. We have the power of parenthood on our side. It may be that every Sunday becomes "buffet" day.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Soup week -- Day 4

Six C's and Peas Soup
or Cauliflower Carrot Coconut Curry Cilantro Chowder (with peas!)

16 oz. bag frozen Cauliflower
4 Carrots, sliced
4 cups Chicken broth
1 can Coconut milk
1-2 Tbs. Curry powder
2 c. frozen peas
handful Cilantro, chopped
Cooked rice, opt.

Place carrots and cauliflower in pot and add broth. Add more water if needed to just cover vegetables and bring to a boil, then simmer until almost tender. Add milk, peas and curry and heat through, then sprinkle with cilantro.

This one is meatless, but so good. We serve it with a scoop of basmati rice in the bowl. I wanted to call it "Seven Seas" Soup, but try as I might, I could not come up with a name for peas that started with C. Can you?

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Soup Month -- Day 3

This one's quick and easy!

Chicken and Dumpling Soup

Half a pot of water
Chicken bouillon to taste
16 oz. bag frozen mixed veggies
2 c. chopped, cooked chicken (I use a bottle of home-canned)
pepper or Mrs. Dash if you want it

Combine and bring to a boil. Top with dumpling dough and boil uncovered 10 min, then covered 10 more.

This is my comfort food. Usually my husband makes it. It's not so comforting when I have to make it myself...just kidding! The dumplings puff up nicely and thicken the broth until it's creamy and Mmmm. Mmmm.

Dumpling Dough

2 c. bisquick (I use homemade)
2/3 c. milk

Mix ingredients and drop walnut-sized balls on boiling soup.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Soup Month -- Day 2

This is one of our family's favorites:

Italian Wedding Soup

1 lb. sausage (I use a roll, like Jimmy Dean)
4-6 carrots, sliced
6 c. chicken broth
2 T. dried onion flakes
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/4 c. chopped fresh parsley, or 1 1/2 T. dried
1/4 c. acini de pepe
6 oz. spinach leaves
parmesan cheese

Using a teaspoon, roll the sausage into tiny balls (there are easier ways to do this, but it is not so pretty--you could brown it, too) and bake on a cookie sheet for 10 min. at 350*. Meanwhile, combine carrots, broth, onions and spices in a pot and bring to a boil for about 5 min. Add pasta and cook until done (according to package). Drop in the spinach and stir until wilted. This can get pretty salty and you may need to water it down. I use boullion granules and make my broth weak. YUM! Now, do not forget this part: 2 T. parmesan cheese PER bowl. Shredded is best, but grated is still pretty awesome.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Soup Month -- Day 1

We like soup at our house, so just for fun and because I like a good challenge, and for the sake of getting those pickles off the front page (see below), I shall attempt one month of soup for dinner. We'll be skipping Thanksgiving Day because it is my favorite of all holidays (don't tell Christmas) and I couldn't bear to miss all the goodies I get once a year!

First off Cream of Broccoli! It is a tradition in our home to have this soup the first time it snows in fall and although I didn't see it, two of my family members swear it was snowing this morning. Lucky for me, I've already blogged this one--click here. It is my mother-in-law's recipe and I am deeply in love with it.

So, a month of soup. Anybody with me?

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Homemade Claussens

Claussen (a brand name) pickles are my favorite. They're super crunchy and garlicky and dillish. MMMMMmmmmm. I have never bought a jar, because they are expensive. I steal them. From my mom, people. Now I've got a recipe.
Also known as "Half-Sours" or "Kosher", these pickles are awesome! They aren't canned, because there isn't enough vinegar to prevent bacteria from growing if they sit on the shelf, however, they last for a year in your fridge! So do Claussens, which are bought in the refrigerated section of your grocery (they aren't shelf-stable, either). So try some, they won't last long. My cukes came from my mother in law, and the garlic, onion and dill from my garden!

Half-Sour Pickles

5 lbs. pickling cucumbers
1 c. onion, chopped fine
6-8 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. mustard seeds
2 Tbs. dill seed (fresh weed & seeds if you've got them)
1 1/2 qts. water
2 c. cider vinegar
1/2 c. canning salt

Dissolve the salt in the water, warming it up if you must, and combine the last seven ingredients. After scrubbing cukes, slice lengthwise, or leave whole if small. Place in jars or an ice cream bucket and pour liquid over them. I get four quart jars. Let sit on your counter three days and then refrigerate before consuming. You're gonna love 'em!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Ham Steak in Five

This is what I've learned to do during the last eighteen months: Get dinner on the table as quickly as possible, get dinner off the table as quickly as possible, get the baby off the table as quickly as possible as often as possible. Did you miss me? I did.

Ham Steak in Five Minutes

One Ham Steak, boneless or not
1/4 c. brown sugar
2 T. vinegar
2 t. dry mustard powder

Mix last three ingredients in a bowl. Place ham steak on a baking sheet and baste with half of mixture. Broil until sugar bubbles. Flip the steak and repeat the basting, broiling again until bubbly. This may in reality take longer than five minutes.

We like it with green beans and mashed potatoes, which for the past year and a half have come from cans. I know, shame on me. Seriously, people, you don't know this baby.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Blessing Dress

Being a woman, I claim the privilege to change my mind at any point in time, for any reason I deem worthy. Therefore, I am blogging again. This didn't fit into the category for either my garden blog or my recipes, but for the sake of those who missed out on my baby's blessing day, here is her dress:
The bunny detail on the skirt:

And the bodice:

Now for the story:
When my oldest child, now five and three quarters of a year old, was just having her first birthday, I decided to learn a little hand embroidery. So, of course, I sought out something extremely difficult-looking to start with. (Wasn't that a grand idea?)
After reading up on all the different stitches, and purchasing needed items and materials, I began. Seven months later, and an estimated total of twenty hours of tedious needlework, I had two embroidered pieces of cloth. I placed them in a ziploc bag where they would be clean until I could finish them into a dress. Then I was pregnant again. Now, I am the last person to use pregnancy as any kind of an excuse, so I'll just say I was waiting...
When my second daughter was just having her first birthday, I was unpacking from a move and found my hard work in a ziploc bag. I decided it was time. I bought a pattern and cut around the embroidery, size two, in case it took me a while. (Then I was pregnant again.)
We'll skip the part where I had a little boy and move on to a week before we blessed our third daughter.
I want to be lazy and let her wear one of her sister's dresses, and then am convinced that this will cause fighting at some point in someone's life and decide I'd better get a move on and make her a dress, and the only white material in the house is...embroidered!
Now we'll skip the part where my mom's old serger was broken and she had to buy me a new one because there were only four days left.
So, I readjust the fabric pieces, cutting them out in 0-3 months and sew like mad to get it done. Wasn't that a lovely story? I knew you'd like it. The big girls got new dresses, too, but they were done months ago after Aunt Sara donated patterns and leftover wedding materials from one of her sisters...Thanks Aunt Sara!
The End (I felt like it needed that.)