Food made easy for busy moms.

Potato, Leek and Corn Soup May 11, 2011

Filed under: Comfort Food,Soup,Vegetarian,What's for Dinner? — alaskafoodmom @ 7:37 pm
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I concocted this last night after being done with this horrible Spring weather that Fairbanks has been doling out to us. I really needed something to warm me up from the inside and I figured this soup would do the trick. On my way home, I envisioned the ingredients that I was craving and the recipe quickly came together in my head. My husband ended up eating two bowls for dinner and in my world that means it was a successful recipe. Also, I didn’t get the “I wouldn’t ask for it again” comment that I tend to get when I am feeling particularly creative. Give a try for yourself and let me know how it works for you. I have some afterthoughts at the end for some different variations on this soup.

1 pound bacon, diced
1 medium sweet onion or yellow onion, diced
1 leek, split lengthwise and slice*
4 stalks celery, sliced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
4 medium russet or Yukon gold potatoes, diced (really any potato you have will work)
4 cups organic free-range chicken broth
1 cup frozen corn
2 cups skim milk (can use 1% or 2% milk too)
1 cup frozen corn
1 tablespoon ground cumin
Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
Optional: 1/8-1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Finely chopped parsley

In a large stock pan, brown bacon until crisp. Remove from pan and drain bacon on paper towels. Drain off oil and reserve 1 tablespoon. Saute onion, leek, celery, and garlic until translucent. Add in potatoes and chicken broth. Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are tender. In a blender, blend together 1 cup frozen corn and 2 cups milk until frothy. Add to soup along with additional cup of frozen corn, cumin, salt and pepper to taste and cayenne if you are using. Be careful with the cayenne, it tends to pick its heat level as it cooks. Make sure to taste the soup to ensure that you have enough salt and pepper; potatoes tend to suck up salt. Warm up soup until just hot, you do not want to bring the soup to a boil once you add in the milk/corn mixture or the soup will break. Add in the reserved bacon. Serve with chopped parsley and a drizzle of olive oil.

*If you are unfamiliar with leeks, they are a vegetable in the onion family. You will need to split the leek lengthwise and rinse under running water in between the segments. Leeks tend to hold dirt between the segments which can be a little tricky when washing.

Afterthoughts: For those of you that are vegetarians or just watching the calories; feel free to omit the bacon. You can saute the onion, leek, celery and garlic in 2 tablespoons olive oil. The chicken broth can also be substituted for a tasty vegetable broth or you could use a hearty mushroom broth.


Chicken Posole May 4, 2011

Filed under: Chicken,Comfort Food,Soup,What's for Dinner? — alaskafoodmom @ 6:24 am
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This recipe works well with any leftover chicken or leftover rotisserie chicken.  If you don’t have either, you can add frozen chicken breasts or chicken thighs to the simmering broth to poach in the soup.  Once cooked, remove and either shred or dice the cooked chicken, then add back to the soup.

1 medium yellow or sweet onion
1 small can diced green chilies
1-2 cups shredded or cubed chicken
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon lemon pepper
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1 can chopped tomatoes in juice
1 can white hominy, drained and rinsed
1 32 fl.oz. container low sodium chicken broth, prefer free range organic
1 avocado cubed
½ cup fresh cilantro chopped
1 lime quartered

In a large stock pot, sauté the onion in 1 tablespoon olive oil until translucent.  Add green chilies, chicken, and spices.  Cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes.  Add canned tomatoes, hominy and chicken broth.  Simmer for about 20 minutes.  Serve soup topped with avocado, cilantro and squeezed lime juice.

Extras: Add a can drained and rinsed pinto or kidney beans to soup and/or ½ cup frozen corn.


Hamburger Soup or Stew

Filed under: Beef and Moose,Comfort Food,Soup,What's for Dinner? — alaskafoodmom @ 6:21 am
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My mom would often throw this soup together for my family when I was growing up.  Now I know why it was such a staple.  It’s easy, economical, fast and a real comfort food in the winter.

1 lb ground moose or hamburger
1 medium onion diced
4 carrots diced
4 celery stalks diced
3 garlic cloves chopped
Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
1 32 fl.oz. container low sodium beef broth, prefer free range organic
1 can chopped tomatoes in juice
1 tablespoon Kitchen Bouquet Browning & Seasoning Sauce*
1 tablespoon steak seasoning with onion, garlic, pepper, thyme, tarragon, bay leaf or other similar seasoning
½ cup frozen peas
½ cup frozen green beans
½ cup frozen corn

In a large stock pot heat olive oil over medium heat and begin to brown meat.  Add onion, carrots, celery, garlic and salt and pepper to taste.  Continue to sauté until vegetables begin to sweat.  Add in beef broth, chopped tomatoes, spices and Kitchen Bouquet.  Bring soup to a simmer and reduce heat to medium low and cook for about 20 minutes.  Add peas, green beans and corn and cook until just heated through.

*Kitchen Bouquet Browning & Seasoning Sauce is the secret ingredient that my grandma always used for her roasts, stews and gravy.  It is concentrated vegetable base that gives the meat a very unique flavor that can’t be duplicated with anything else.  Use sparingly, this sauce is very strong.  Can be found in the spice aisle or the prepared gravy aisle of your grocery store.

Variation: Hamburger Stew

Follow recipe above.  After meat has been browned add in 2 tablespoons flour and cook for about 5-7 minutes.  Add in vegetables, 1 cup diced potatoes and continue to cook as above.