January 8, 2011

Season for Soup

Mom gave us a Christmas cactus that is part of the original one my great-grandma grew! And it's blooming!

I have to find a more permanent spot for it, though, because I keep bumping it when I cut the corner too close. It's in our dining room, so we get to enjoy it every evening during dinner.

We've had soup a lot in the past few weeks. It's that time of year! Last night we had Broccoli Potato Chowder with beer bread. The soup tasted WAY better than it looks here. Trust me. I even packed some for lunch today! If the bowl looks half empty, that's because it was. We were so excited to eat dinner that I forgot to take a picture. Note the bite out of the bread. :-) The Bup said I could blame him, but this is my bowl so I guess we're equally at fault.

I made the beer bread with Yuengling Lager. My favorite! The flavor came through nicely. We had a big salad with kale, spinach, mixed spring greens, onion, carrot, green bell pepper, and cucumber. Can you tell I went to the farm market?

Broccoli Potato Chowder
adapted from Cooking Light 

Yield: 6 servings

1 T coconut oil
1  large onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2  c (about 1 lb) red potato, cubed
2  T  Worcestershire sauce
2 T rice vinegar
1 T liquid smoke
1/2 tsp dried sage
1 tsp  salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
1/4  tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
Dash of hot sauce
6 c low-salt vegetable broth
2 1/2  cups  small broccoli florets
2 T  all-purpose flour
1 14 oz. can coconut milk
1/2  cup shredded cheddar cheese
2  tablespoons  lemon juice

Heat coconut oil in large pot over medium heat until melted. Add onion and celery and cook until softened. Add potato and next 10 ingredients (through broth). Bring to a boil, uncovered, and then reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes or potatoes are tender.

Puree mixture with an imersion blender until most of the chunks are blended. Soup will look nice and thick.

Whisk together flour and coconut milk in a small bowl. Add to soup mixture. Cook over medium heat until soup starts to thicken, stirring constantly. (I walked away a lot during this and didn't stir constantly. It still tasted good.) Stir in broccoli and chedder cheese. Mix in lemon juice and stir. Enjoy!

Note: The original recipe called for lump crab meat. I bet that would be delicious but I didn't have any, so I didn't add any. It was equally delicious without!


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