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Tomato Soup

January 2, 2014 Leave a comment
Tomato soup

Tomato soup

Is there any job in America that gets it wrong more often than Weather Forecasters? I know its not an exact science, but it IS a science and you would think that in 2014 there would be a better way to get it right.

In my opinion, the only way to know what the weather is up to, is to step outside and see for yourself.

That said, I still find myself checking the various weather forecasts, especially when I have upcoming plans outdoors (or vacation).

I check way more often in the winter than the summer. I find this odd because I have less outdoor plans in the winter so in theory I should care less.  However, I do it mainly to see IF we’re going to get inclement weather that may factor in to my daily commute.

So recently I checked out one of the online weather sites and was upset to discover that in the next few days they’re predicting frigid temperatures.

A high of 1 degree to be exact.  One. Uno.  Factor in the wind chills and who knows how cold it will get.  I won’t like that at all.  I suppose many won’t.

Then I remembered there are people in Minnesota, North Dakota, Wisconsin, and plenty of other states that have it much worse than me for many more days each and every year.

Then there’s the Russians?  The Canadians?

After dreading whats forthcoming for a few moments, I realized that no matter how bad I think I have it, there is always someone worse off.

Still doesn’t mean I won’t lay around in comfy sweats and a hoodie enjoying a nice cup of tea….or coffee….or a delicious bowl of soup.

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This recipe is simple and has just a few ingredients (most of which may already be in your pantry).

From start to finish it takes around 15 minutes give or take.

This soup is much healthier that those cans of condensed soup. Not to mention, this version probably costs about the same, yet feeds a family of 4 (with leftovers for lunch the next day).

Who doesn’t like healthy, economical, simple and delicious.

Enjoy!

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 (28 oz) can of diced tomatoes (I used Organic which was $1.50 at Aldi)
  • 1 (43 oz) container of low sodium tomato juice
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar (to cut the acidity of the tomatoes)
  • 2 low sodium chicken bouillon cubes
  • Fresh Ground Pepper (eyeball it)
  • 1/2 cup Half & Half
  • 1 tablespoon of basil, chopped

Directions:

  1. Melt butter in a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium high heat.
  2. Add onion and cook until soft.
  3. Add tomatoes and stir to combine.
  4. Add tomato juice, stir.
  5. Add sugar, stir.
  6. Add bouillon cubes, stir.
  7. Add pepper, stir.
  8. Bring everything to a boil then remove from heat.
  9. Stir in the half & half and basil.
  10. Serve immediately. (preferably with a grilled cheese sandwich)

(Better for You) Potato and Ham Soup

January 26, 2013 Leave a comment
Potato and Ham Soup

Potato and Ham Soup

It’s January and people are making tons of resolutions they won’t keep.  Get to the gym, save more money, quit smoking, and of course, eating better.

Today’s post is the first in a series of delicious meals that won’t go straight to your waistline and hopefully help you keep your resolution.

Then again, I think these recipes are so good that you may want to eat everything thus throwing this theory out the window.

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After Christmas, all of those hams that are stocked to capacity at the grocery store go on sale.  Normally twenty or thirty dollar hams are half off…maybe less.  It’s hard to pass up that kind of bargain so I throw one in my cart whether I need it or not.

The problem is I have a small family and a whole ham will go a very long way.  So that means leftovers.  Lots and lots and lot of leftovers.

I know you can freeze it, but to me, frozen ham that’s been thawed just doesn’t have the same taste.  So I have to find alternative uses for it.

Ham omelettes for breakfast.  Ham and Cheese sandwiches for lunch. And ham and potato soup for dinner.  I’m good with these options.

Soup is a great meal when you’re watching what you eat.  It can be loaded with calories but with a few simple tweaks you can make any soup healthy.  This uses lots of lower fat/lower calorie ingredients.  But I promise you it isn’t low on taste.

Soup is also very filling so you typically eat less.  However, be warned, this soup is so tasty you probably will want seconds.  Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 4 cups diced potatoes
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 2 cups ham, diced
  • 1 cup 1% milk
  • 1/2 cup low fat sour cream
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. Add chicken broth to a large dutch oven (or soup pot) over medium low heat.  Bring to a simmer.
  2. Add potatoes, onion, carrots, garlic, and ham.  Stir.
  3. Simmer over low heat for approximately 2 hours.
  4. Add milk and sour cream.  Stir.
  5. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Continue cooking over low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Serve in your favorite soup bowl and garnish with a few sprinkles of low fat sharp cheddar cheese and a slice of crusty bread (optional).
Good for you

Delicious and good for you

Pasta e Fagioli

September 8, 2012 3 comments
Pasta E Fagioli

Pasta E Fagioli (Soup with Pasta and Beans)

When I stepped outside this morning I was greeted by a bit of rain, a strong breeze, and much cooler temperatures than we’ve had around here lately.

Not to mention kids are back in school, college football is in its second weekend and pro football has kicked off as well.

Must be Fall (or at least all signs are starting to point that its right around the corner).

For me, Fall means really digging in to some classic comfort foods meant to warm you up.  Hearty soups, chili and stews come to mind.

One of my all-time favorite soups is an Italian soup with pasta and beans, Pasta e Fagiloi.

This is a soup my mom made time and time again.  With her broken English I never really knew what she was saying.  I thought it was Pasta Fa-Jew (no offense to my Jewish followers).  For years, that’s what I called it.  Doesn’t matter how its pronounced, I just knew it was good soup.

Simple ingredients, easy to make, and extremely satisfying.  Be sure to serve it with a nice piece of crusty bread to sop up any soup you can’t get with the spoon.

Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large carrot, chopped fine
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped fine
  • 1 small onion, chopped fine
  • 1 14oz can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 14oz cans cannelloni beans, rinsed well
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • 1 box of small pasta (tubes — ditalini — small shells or elbow noodles would work too)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. Cook pasta according to instructions, drain and set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a soup pot.  Cook onion, carrot and celery until soft.
  3. Add garlic, cook 1 minute.
  4. Add broth, beans, and tomatoes and cook 20-30 minutes.
  5. Add cooked pasta and salt and pepper to taste. (*see note)
  6. Cook a few minutes until pasta is warm.
  7. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and grated parmesan cheese.

NOTE: I actually add the amount of pasta I want to my bowl, then ladle soup over the pasta. Doing so controls the amount of pasta to soup ratio AND the pasta doesn’t suck up all of the broth

Soup and Bread

Is it soup? Is it pasta? Pasta Fa-Jew