Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A warm and cozy soup

It's a cold and blustery day... Soup for dinner I say!

There is my rhyme time and now about our soup. There has been much talk if this Pho soup, and being the adventure seeking chef I just have to try it. Very simple, delicious and it is healthy! Low in fat and salt. Read carefully as this next part is very complicated. **wink, wink!**

For enough soup to serve 2 follow this: Shred the beef very thin *this is very important as the hot broth must cook the meat. Thinly slice carrots, celery, broccoli and green onion and set aside. For the noodles you could use any quick cooking thin noodle, have these ready in the bowls. Heat approximately 6 cups of homemade beef stock to a gentle boil, add in 2 teaspoons of sesame oil and the same amount of fish sauce. Once the broth is at a rolling boil quickly ladle it over the dry noodles, pile the shredded beef over the noodles and top with the vegetables. You can garnish with drizzle of soya sauce and some fresh chopped cilantro. Be sure to plunge the meat and the vegetables into the hot broth and enjoy!

Sorry there are no photos- we were enjoying the soup so much that we didn't think to do a photo shoot! Maybe next time as this was a favourite soup.

You should try this soup, there are tons of different modifications that one could do. You could add in shrimp, or what about fish instead of beef? Fish stock instead of beef stock? Or even vegetable stock could be a nice alternative. There is almost no limit!

I think next weeks menu is calling for one of these delicious variations.

That is all for now, see you in the kitchen!

Sent from my iPhone

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Testing a new way to post on the go

So I thought it could be so much fun to be able to post 'on the go'! Can't you see it now... In the cheese line at the Italian centre, picking out fresh ingredients at the farmers market! My options are endless now.

And maybe even with new and exciting pictures too? I have attached a picture of our new years fondue for official test purposes and to give you a nice visual.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Soup that made my day!

So I felt like making soup today for dinner.  What do I have in the fridge...?  Carrots, acorn squash, onions, home made chicken stock and ham sausage; and what all does this make?!?

A fantastic soup!  First I roasted the carrots, squash and onion for about 1 hour.  Meanwhile I minced the ham sausage (you could use bacon or even deli ham or any smoked meat) and pan fried it to give it crispy edges.  Once the carrots and squash were all sweet and roasted I pureed them in the stock.  Mince the onion and add it along with the crispy ham sausage.  Something to remember is that once pureed the soup may get very thick, so add a bit more stock until it is the desired consistency.  Add in a few fresh herbs; I made a mixture of garlic, parsley, oregano and tarragon (carrots best friend).  Season with fresh pepper and sea salt and serve with a bit of toasted whole grain bread.

It was so good I ate it all before I could even take picture!  Really, do you want to see an empty bowl?  There is nothing left - I was almost, almost tempted to lick the bowl clean it was the good.  (but I didn't do that.)

I know you really want to see my empty bowl so here it is... It was that good.

So that was Monday night dinner.  Mmmmmmm.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Holiday Breakfasts

This holiday season has been nice and relaxing, complete with lazy breakfasts.
In the pan waiting for the oven to heat
I recently found a new cinnamon bun recipe that can be as complex as you wish it to be.  In other words you could make it simple by using pre made croissant dough or more complex by making your own pastry.  We opted for the easy route on pre made croissant dough - after all it was New Years Day and we were not really feeling up to making our own croissant pastry.  They turned out quite well, next time I would not coat them in the extra cinnamon sugar.  These would be a fun treat to make with kids of all ages - Tim this is for you!  The original recipe I found here;

And this is how mine turned out.  As you can see here I added a bit of lemon zest for a bright contrast against the sweet cinnamon & sugar.
Hot and fresh

The next breakfast that I created was baked eggs.  I have seen quite a few recipes for these as they are a popular breakfast item for a house full of guests during the holidays.  They are quite simple and very easy to make with whatever you have in the fridge.  We had breakfast sausages as the surprise inside.
All it takes is the following;
Individual baking dishes well buttered - I used my French Onion soup pots as I was concerned with the depth but usually they are made in ramekins. For more delicate baked eggs use a shallower baking dish.
A surprise in the bottom of each pot - this could be chopped bacon (cooked), sliced sausage (cooked), chevre and herbs, or grated cheese.
Crack your eggs into each pot - we did 2 eggs each with a little extra egg white and a splash of cream.
Top with salt & pepper and bake for 7 to 15 minutes.  The baking time will depend on how deep your pots are.  And you will need to watch them as the egg yolks should be a bit runny so you can dip toast fingers in it!

This is a wonderful breakfast treat for everyone.

So with one more lazy holiday morning I must begin to dream up my next breakfast delight.  I am off to my cookbook library for inspiration.

That is all for now, see you in the kitchen.