Sunday, February 17, 2008

Potato Soup

This soup should really be called Cheesey Potato Vegetable Soup because there is a whole lot more than potatoes going on here! This is one of my vegetarian daughter's favorite soups.

Potato Soup

1-2 T oil
1 onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
1 cup chopped carrots
5-6 potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 cup shredded cabbage (i.e. cole slaw mix)
2-3 cans chicken broth
salt and pepper
1-2 cups milk
4 oz Velveeta or American cheese, cubed or torn into small pieces

Saute onions and celery in oil until softened. Add carrots, potatoes and cabbage and pour in chicken broth until veggies are just covered. Season with salt and pepper. Go light on the salt as the cheese you add later will add additional salt.

Cook for 20-30 minutes or until potatoes are soft. Remove about one cup of potatoes and mash with a potato masher. Return to soup. Add milk and cheese. Stir until cheese melts but do not let mixture boil. Taste and add more salt or pepper, if desired.

I'm serving it tonight with toasted honey oat baguette slices.

Italian Pineapple Cream Cake

One of my coworkers has a birthday this week so I decided to bake him a cake rather than a traditional bakery purchase. I am making one of my favorite cake recipes. It's quick because it starts with a cake mix but the topping makes it very special. I tend to overindulge when I make this one - although the picture may not appear that appetizing, I assure you.... this cake is delicious!!

Italian Pineapple Cream Cake
  • One white cake mix, prepared as directed on box
  • 2/3 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups milk
  • one small package instant vanilla pudding (original recipe called for pineapple cream pudding but I've never found that in the grocery store)
  • 16 oz can crushed pineapple, well drained
Bake cake in greased/floured 13 x 9 pan as directed on box. Remove from pan, set on cooling rack and poke holes with wooden spoon handle.

Mix together sweetened condensed milk and melted butter and pour over warm cake. Let set until cool.

Meanwhile, mix together cream cheese, milk and pudding mix. Stir in pineapple. Top cake with mixture.

Refrigerate before serving.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

French Dip Sandwiches (a two-fer recipe)

This beef usually ends up being two meals for us.

French Dip Sandwiches (crockpot)

1 chuck roast or round roast
1-2 cans Campbell's french onion soup
1-2 cans beef broth, low sodium
black pepper

1-2 skinny baguettes (I like the "you bake" kind from Kroger)
swiss or provolone cheese slices

Place beef, soups and pepper in crockpot and cook on low for 8 hours. Remove beef from broth and slice or shred. (Note, I don't add salt when using canned soups. For this recipe, I wait until after it's cooked and then if it needs salt, I add it then.) Add beef back to broth.

Meanwhile, slice baguette(s) lengthwise and cut into sandwich size pieces. Top each piece with cheese. And bake for a few minutes at 400 until cheese is melted. Remove from oven and top with beef. Serve with a bowl of au jus from the crockpot for dipping.

Beef and Noodles

Remaining beef and au jus
a bag of frozen Rheames noodles

Reheat beef in broth. Cook noodles. Top noodles with beef and enjoy.

Or you can turn it into a beefy noodle soup by adding another can of broth and some cooked veggies.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Beef Barley Vegetable Soup (crockpot)

This soup is one of our family favorites. It tastes great and it's so easy. It only takes me five minutes to put it together before I leave for work in the morning. I usually throw the ingredients for a loaf of bread in the bread machine at the same time and set the timer so when I get home from work, I walk into a house that smells of fresh baked bread and soup.

Beef Barley Vegetable Soup

1/2 lb beef cubes, trimmed of fat and cut in 1/2" pieces
1 bag frozen mixed vegetables
1 cup chopped cabbage (I use the bagged coleslaw)
1 can chopped tomatoes, don't drain
2 15 oz can beef broth
1 can V-8 juice
1/4 cup barley
2 bay leaves
black pepper

Mix together all ingredients in crockpot. Cook on low for 8 hours.