Turkey and Wild Rice Soup

I worked both weekend days, so on Friday, I stopped at the store on the way home and picked up groceries for the weekend.  When I got home, I started a pot of soup.  I didn’t use a recipe, I totally winged it, based on what I bought and what was already in the house.

I started by dicing up an onion, two leeks, several carrots, and three stalks of celery.   I cooked the celery in some stock in a small pan so that it would get tender. I diced up two boneless, skinless turkey breasts, seasoned them with salt, pepepr and poultry seasoning.  In a large stock pot, I browned the meat in batches.  After removing the meat, I sauteed the leeks, onion, and carrots, with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper.

I added in two minced garlic cloves, the celery, and two boxes of chicken stock.  While this was cooking, I made three small boxes of wild rice.  Once the rice was ready, the vegetables were tender, so all I had to do was combine the rice with the soup and add a splash of heavy cream.

The next night, we had soup and roast beef with cheddar sandwiches for dinner.  It was so nice to come home after a really long day and not have to worry about getting dinner on the table.  All I had to do was asssemble a sandwich and heat up the soup.

Grapefruit Cake and Banana Bread

I had some grapefruits in the fridge that needed to be used up so I started googling recipes.  I found this one for a grapefruit cake.  I was intrigued.  I had made a tangerine cake at Thanksgiving that my family enjoyed, so I thought, what the heck!

grapefruit cake

It was really good, incredibly moist AND it had a grapefruit glaze! Next up, I needed to do something with the bananas that were growing overly ripe on my counter.  I asked the hubby what he prefered and should not have been shocked by his response of banana bread.  He can eat his weight in banana bread.  In fact, he ate this entire loaf, by himself, over the course of three days.

banana bread

As a bonus, I was able to use up the fruit in my fridge and on the counter!

Beef Brisket

I LOVE a good beef recipe and beef brisket…AWESOME!  Plus, there is nothing  better on a cold, snowy day, than slow roasting dinner in the oven.  The house is warm, it smells awesome, AND you get dinner.

I follow Ina Garten’s recipe for brisket.  It calls for lots of onions and leeks, plus a bit of tomato paste.  DELICIOUS, and so very tender.

beef brisket and mashed pots

I paired it with mashed potatoes because, well, I love them, and sauteed greens.  I really got out of the habit of cooking greens on a regular basis and I have been trying to make them more often.  The hubby isn’t a huge fan, but he will eat them.  I picked up a batch of swiss chard and collard greens from the farmers market near my office and they were the perfect side dish for dinner.

sauteed greens

Slightly bitter garlicky greens, lucious, creamy mashed potatoes and achingly tender beef.  It almost makes me like winter….almost

Chicken and Wild Rice Bake

This summer, while visiting a friend, she made a dish for dinner at the request of her youngest daughter. Chicken and wild rice bake.  Sounds good to me…

chx and wild rice bake

It was super simple to put together.  You start by browning bone in, skin on, chicken thighs.  No need to cook them fully, you will finish the dish in the oven, all you are looking for is a bit of color.  Once you remove them from the pan, you saute some onions and peppers in a bit of olive oil, seasoned with salt and pepper.  Again, just looking to partially cook them.

While you are doing that, follow the package directions to cook two small boxes of wild rice.

Once the rice, chicken and vegetables are ready, it is time to assemble.   You toss the rice with half a jar of alfredo sauce and put that in the bottom of a casserole dish.  Top it with the vegetables, then the chicken.  Top the chicken with the rest of the alfredo sauce and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, until the chicken is fully cooked and the vegetables are tender.

It is in no way a fancy meal, just heavy, comforting, home cooking! I’m thinking it might be interesting to desconstruct this recipe and turn it into a soup.  I’ll let you know how that turns out!

 

Soup and SNOW

Well folks, even though I haven’t been here to write about it, I have been cooking!  I tend to make a lot of soup in the winter.  The hubby and I are both HUGE fans and it makes for a wonderfully hot, filling, comforting dinner.  I also bake a lot more in the winter – cookies, cakes, bread, rolls…. you name it.  It makes the house smell wonderful, it heats up the kitchen, and does horrible things to my waistline…ah well! Good thing I am eating a lot of veggie filled soup to balance out my diet!

Four potato and chicken soup

cream of potato with ham

Cream of potato with ham

tomato basil

Tomato basil

italian veg soup

Italian vegetable

The four potato and chicken soup was nice and spicy!  Potato with ham was creamy and comforting.  We LOVE tomato basil, it goes beautifully with a grilled cheese.  The Italian vegetable soup was chock full of veggies and spicy italian sausage.  As much as I enjoy soup, I do have to say I am just about over winter.  I need sunshine, I need warmer temperatures, I need to not have to wear a jacket, hat, gloves, and scarf to work….how many days until spring?

winter sunrise

 

Soup!

While I was home on Winter Break, I made quite a few soups.  I made a Polish Potato Soup Recipe from the King Arthur Flour site.  It was amazingly good!  I had some smoked kielbasa left over from the night before, so I diced that and added it to the pot.  It was SO good!

There is nothing like a pot of pasta fagioli soup on a cold winter day.  Tons of vegetables and beans in a hearty broth…YUM!  I started by cooking a bag of dried beans, which I seasoned with a whole head of garlic and some fresh rosemary.  Once the beans were done, I started the soup.  I used up a bunch of fresh veggies from the fridge.  I added them to the pot, seasoned them with salt and pepper and let them sweat for about 4 minutes or so.   I added in a bit of minced garlic, a can of diced tomatoes, chicken stock, the beans, and a parmesan cheese rind.   I let this cook for a few hours, when we were about ready to eat, I added a bag of baby spinach and cooked of some ditalini pasta.

pasta fajoli

The third soup was a poblano corn chowder recipe from the Daily Soup Cookbook.  It was OK, we certainly enjoyed eating it.  You start by sauteing poblano peppers, onions, and garlic together.  Add in a ton of diced potatoes, two bags of frozen corn and chicken stock.  Once the vegetables are tender, you add in 4 oz of crumbled feta and 2 cups of monteray jack cheese, minced cilantro, and a dollop of heavy cream.

poblano corn chowder

I really think it needs smokey component to make it amazing.  Next time I think I will roast the corn and add some smoked paprika and cumin to the vegetables.

Thankfully, John is very happy with soup and sandwiches or soup and home made bread for dinner, which allowed me time to organize my kitchen cabinets and not have to worry about making an elaborate dinner!

Smoked Kielbasa and Pierogi

I picked up a pound of smoked kielbasa at the butcher while on break.   It made for an easy, quick, delicious dinner!

keilbasa and pierogi

I  pulled a bag of previously made pierogi from the fridge.  I made a batch of coleslaw earlier in the day.  When it came time for dinner, I had two skillets going on the stove – one for the kielbasa and one for the pierogi.  Super easy, super YUMMY!