Thursday, November 25, 2010

Mommy Soup Four and Five

Four was clean out the refrigerator soup. I didn't have enough left over potato leek soup for both of us. I cooked up some lardons of bacon and a half of left over white onion, the last four or five mushrooms and the last of some celery. I added chicken stock and a potato and cooked it for awhile. Then I added the last of the potato leek. For a hodge podge it was extremely good.
The next day we ate out and then I made us a mommy request dinner: pork chop, baked potato, apple sauce and spinach. And then it was time for minestrone.
This is another one of those easy soups. First the holy trinity: onion, carrots and celery. No garlic because Mom is not a fan. Then a can of kidney beans, a can of garbanzo beans, a can of tomatoes, a bunch of chicken stock and some penne. Topped with grana. We ate that for two days and there's still left overs. The Muir Glen tomatoes bring a lot of smoky goodness.
Last night I made mushroom, spinach and smoked artichoke rissoto. Tonight we're going to Debbie's mom's house for turkey. Not sure what I'll do on Friday.
I have two cookie doughs in the freezer. Maybe cookie blogging will begin.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Mommy Soup Three and Four

When I make soup I try to make enough for a few days. I think soup is one of those things that tastes better the next day. The French Onion went over a little too well and there were no left overs. Sooooo I made mushroom barley. It's another easy soup except the barley always takes longer than I think it will.
Right before I made the soup I watched Chuck's Day Off. He was making stuffing and was chopping a bunch of veg and sausage. I was surprised when he put all of the veg in the pan at the same time. I always add onions first. The longer you cook them the sweeter they get. There may be times when you don't want sweetness but usually it's a good flavor. When I made the soup I sauteed onion first then carrots because they're dense and need longer then celery, which needs no time at all. Last, Crimini mushrooms. I added the barley and cooked it for a minute or two to make it toasty and finally I added beef stock.
I served it with a warm spinach, bacon and red bell pepper salad and corn bread. I got the idea to make corn bread from Chuck. He was making some for his stuffing and it sounded good.
The next day we ate it again although I had to add more onions, mushrooms and stock. And I made a salad with radishes, celery, radicchio and spinach.
Tonight I made potato leek. Sauteed leeks, added chicken stock tossed in some Yukon Golds and TADA! Sometimes I start with bacon. Same salad. Mom got the last piece of corn bread. We'll be eating it again tomorrow.
Soup is good food.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Mommy Soup Two

French Onion. Really simple. Really Easy.
I sauteed Vidalia Onion in olive oil on high heat at first but then medium heat until they got brown and sweet. I love the way onions start to smell like meat. When they had reduced by more than half I added some Balsamic vinegar and beef stock. White wine is more traditional but I love the sweetness of the onions and the Balsamic just amps it up. I was wishing, as I always am, for some fresh herbs like Bay leaf and Thyme. My herb garden in a pot failed a few times.
I toasted some Pugliese and topped it with Gruyere. I cut the toasts into cubes to make it easier for Mom to handle. She seems to have liked it.
I really wish I had taken a picture but the drive to feed the mommy throws me off my game. I'm sure I'll be making it again.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Mommy Soups

Mom's visit threatens to reduce my already sparse posting. It occurred to me that I could write posts about the many soups I make for her. She starts off wanting butternut squash soup, which she says is her favorite. Last year she changed her favorite with pretty much every new soup. I had butternut squash soup ready when she arrived.
My soup techniques are as random as as all my cooking. No recipes. For the butternut squash I roasted the squash, sauteed carrots, celery and onion, added the squash and some chicken stock, blended everything and ran it through my food mill ( just because it's new and I'm enamored). As always there are things I could do. I could season with cumin, or smoked paprika. I could top with creme fraiche. Chili flakes are a good add but Mom isn't into spices. She really just likes the plain soup.
I serve this with a salad of apples, celery and fennel, dressed with sherry vinegar, salt and pepper. I got this from a chef I worked with years ago. He topped the salad with a goat cheese souffle. Divine.
Soup season is here. Maybe I can blog it.