Monthly Archives: April 2015

Mashed Potato Ham and Cheese Soup

By | April 30, 2015
Mashed Potato Ham and Cheese Soup

Ever wonder what to do with a pile of leftover mashed potatoes? Make soup, of course!

This Mashed Potato Ham and Cheese Soup is a very easy recipe to use up the stragglers in the refrigerator, including ham, cheese and corn. And it’s very versatile, too. If you don’t have ham, substitute chicken or bacon. The corn could be replaced with peas, broccoli or cauliflower – whatever you like.

Don’t let the simplicity of the preparation fool you. It is an excellent potato soup outright – rich, creamy and hearty.

Mashed Potato Ham and Cheese Soup
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: American
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 cups cubed ham
  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup half-and-half
  • 1 cup chicken broth/stock
  • 4 cups mashed potatoes
  • 1 cup corn (frozen, canned or fresh)
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • Fresh parsley
Instructions
  1. In a large Dutch oven or soup pot, heat the butter over medium-low heat
  2. Stir in the onions and cook 5 minutes, or until soft
  3. Add the garlic and ham pieces and cook 2 to 3 minutes more
  4. Pour in the milk, half-and-half and chicken broth and stir
  5. Add the potatoes and corn and mix well, until thoroughly incorporated
  6. Stir in the the salt, pepper, paprika
  7. Add the cheese and heat through until melted
  8. Finish with a bit of chopped fresh parsley, a dusting of paprika and more cheese, if desired

Looking for the perfect pot to cook up your next batch of soup? I recommend the Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven. It comes in 11 different colors and is an excellent value for the price.

Bloody Mary Chili

By | April 23, 2015
Bloody Mary Chili

Here in Wisconsin, the Bloody Mary cocktail is serious business. Many bars and restaurants fiercely defend their reputation for serving the “best” or “biggest” bloody in the area. Some of these cocktails are taken to such prodigious levels that the beverage becomes almost a meal in its own right. Overstuffed glasses brim with everything from hard-boiled eggs and cocktail shrimp to beef sticks and pickles.

With a bit of creativity you can customize the drink to your exact specifications, and that’s the inspiration behind this Bloody Mary chili.

Starting with a “base” of spicy hot vegetable juice, I toss in a handful of additional Bloody Mary ingredients, including celery, celery seeds, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish and pickle juice!

The result is a nicely balanced and delicious chili that has plenty of spirit and flavor.

Bloody Mary Chili Ingredients

Bloody Mary Chili
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Chili
Cuisine: American
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1 pound ground beef or turkey
  • 1 pound ground sausage
  • 1 beef soup bone (optional)
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 46-ounce V8 spicy hot vegetable juice
  • 28 ounces diced tomatoes
  • Two, 15-ounce cans pinto beans, rinsed thoroughly with cold water
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon pickle juice
Instructions
  1. In a large Dutch oven, brown the sausage and ground beef or turkey over medium heat
  2. Remove meat when cooked
  3. Drain all but approximately 1 tablespoon of the fat and heat again over medium
  4. Drop in the onions, celery and soup bone (if using) and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, until vegetables turn soft
  5. Stir in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, celery seeds and cook for 2 minutes more, stirring frequently
  6. Pour in 16 ounces of the vegetable juice and stir to remove any solid bits in the pot
  7. Return the meat to the pot along with the remaining vegetable juice, tomatoes and Worcestershire sauce
  8. Reduce heat and simmer 1 hour
  9. Stir in the beans, horseradish, black pepper and simmer for 30 minutes more
  10. Pour in the pickle juice, give everything a final stir and serve

Ground Turkey and SausageBrown meatReserve 1 tablespoon fatAdd veggies and soup boneCook onions, celery and soup boneAdd garlic and spicesCook garlic and spicesDeglaze pot with vegetable juiceReturn meat to potPour in Worcestershire saucePour in remaining vegetable juiceAdd tomatoesAdd pinto beansStir in black pepper and horseradishFinish with pickle juiceBloody Mary Chili

 

Looking for the perfect soup pot to cook up your next batch of chili? I recommend the Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven. It comes in 11 different colors and is an excellent value for the price.

 

 

 

 

Sloppy Joe Soup

By | April 21, 2015

In my opinion, almost any recipe can be transformed into soup, often with just a simple tweak or two. For Sloppy Joe Soup, I take an old favorite and replace the bun with broth for a hearty bowlful of sloppy goodness. It couldn’t be easier!

Sloppy Joe Soup
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: American
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar (white or apple cider)
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • 1 quart beef broth
  • ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. In a Dutch oven or soup pot, brown the ground beef, onion and celery over medium-low heat until beef is cooked and vegetables are soft - about 7 minutes
  2. Drain fat
  3. Add mustard, sugar, Worcestershire, vinegar and ketchup and mix well
  4. Pour in beef broth and bring mixture to a boil
  5. Reduce heat and let simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally

Looking for the perfect pot to cook up your next batch of soup? I recommend the Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven. It comes in 11 different colors and is an excellent value for the price.

Spicy Ethiopian Lentil Soup with Niter Kibbeh

By | April 17, 2015
Serve with yogurt and bread

I love lentils and lentil soup, but after a while I get tired of the same old-same old and know it’s time to mix it up.

The plan?

What better way to perk up lentils than to bring in the flavors of Ethiopia, one of the world’s most ancient cuisines?

Butter made better

This Spicy Ethiopian Lentil soup’s base flavor begins with a spiced clarified butter called Niter Kibbeh. You can purchase Niter Kibbeh online or at an African grocery, but it’s more fun and satisfying to make your own. This gorgeous, golden-yellow elixir is deliciously aromatic and seductive. I couldn’t help taking the lid off the jar and passing it back and forth with my wife, each of us inhaling deeply as if the Niter Kibbeh were some fresh blossom of spring. There is clarified butter and then there is Niter Kibbeh. It is amazing.

But what about the spicy?

What gives this soup its kick is the use of Berbere (pronounced bear-bear-EH). Berbere is a signature spice mix of Ethiopia with a rich, reddish color.  It consists of numerous spices including allspice, cardamom, cinnamon, coriander, ginger, nutmeg, paprika, black pepper and cayenne pepper. The latter is usually the primary ingredient, which gives Berbere its fiery character.

This Berbere recipe from Chef Marcus Samuelsson is a very good one. Otherwise, you can purchase a ready-to-go Berbere spice mix online.

Let’s begin with the Niter Kibbeh!

Niter Kibbeh

Spicy Ethiopian Lentil Soup with Niter Kibbeh
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Butter
Cuisine: Ethiopian
Serves: 2 cups
Ingredients
  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2-inch piece ginger, minced
  • 2-inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon ground fenugreek
  • 3 cloves, whole
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom seeds
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
Instructions
  1. Cut the butter into 1-inch pieces and place in a medium saucepan
  2. Melt the butter over medium heat
  3. When the butter is foamy white on top, add the remaining ingredients and mix well
  4. Turn the heat down to low and let the mixture simmer untouched for about 45 minutes
  5. Eventually, the solids will collect on the bottom of the saucepan
  6. Line a colander with four folds of wet cheesecloth and pour the mixture through it into a heat-proof bowl or saucepan
  7. The liquid should be clear and free of any solids. If not, pour through cheesecloth again.
  8. Discard the solids and cheesecloth
  9. Allow the liquid to cool; then transfer to a clean jar – you will get about 2 cups of Niter Kibbeh
  10. When refrigerated, the Niter Kebbeh will become solid and is good for about 3 months

1 pound butter cubesMelt ButterAdd vegetables and spicesMix well and reduce to simmerSimmer 45 minutesSolids will collect on the bottomStrain through cheeseclothOnly liquid should remain after strainingPour Niter Kibbeh into clean jarNiter Kibbeh ready for use

Now, onto the Spicy Ethiopian Lentil Soup!

Spicy Ethiopian Lentil Soup Ingredients

Spicy Ethiopian Lentil Soup with Niter Kibbeh
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Ethiopian
Serves: 8
Ingredients
  • 1 cup lentils, rinsed thoroughly in cold water
  • ¼ cup Niter Kibbeh
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Berbere
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 quart chicken stock
  • ½ cup tomato paste
  • 15-ounce canned tomatoes, diced
  • ½ teaspoon Himalayan Pink salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
  1. Melt the Niter Kibbeh over medium heat
  2. Stir in the onions and cook 4 minutes
  3. Add garlic, Berbere, cumin, paprika and cook 1 minute
  4. Mix in the lentils and stir to coat with the onion-spice mixture
  5. Pour in the stock and bring to a boil
  6. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered 30 to 40 minutes, until lentils are cooked
  7. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste and let simmer another 10 minutes
  8. Season with salt and pepper
  9. Top with a spoonful or two of thick plain yogurt

Add Niter Kibbeh to Dutch OvenMelt Niter KibbehStir in onionsCook onions 4 minutesAdd spices and garlicCook spice mixtureStir in lentilsPour in Chicken StockAdd tomatoes and tomato pasteStir togetherSimmer 10 minutesServe with yogurt and breadServe with thick Greek Yogurt

 

Looking for the perfect pot to cook up your next batch of soup? I recommend the Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven. It comes in 11 different colors and is an excellent value for the price.

 

 

 

 

 

Easy Chicken Salsa and Corn Soup

By | April 13, 2015
Frontera Tomatillo Salsa

Frontera Tomatillo SalsaLooking for a bulletproof soup that’s quick and easy to make?

One that has depth of flavor but doesn’t take all day to create?

This Easy Chicken Salsa and Corn Soup can be put together and on the table in 45 minutes.

It’s the perfect go-to on a busy weeknight when you want something hearty and delicious. Even better – leftovers for tomorrow’s lunch.

If you have boneless chicken breasts, thighs or tenders, then you’re on your way. Is there a jar of salsa in the cupboard? A carton of chicken broth or stock? A can of corn?

I bet you have onions and garlic – you better!

Excellent! Pull out your soup pot and start chopping.

I like the flavor of a salsa verde (green salsa) for this soup and recommend either Frontera Tomatillo Salsa or Arriba! Fire Roasted Mexican Green Salsa. But you could easily substitute your favorite tomato-based salsa and have excellent results.

 

Chicken Salsa Soup
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: 4-6
Ingredients
  • 1 pound boneless chicken, cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 quart chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 white onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 15-ounce can whole kernel corn, drained and rinsed in cold water
  • 2 cups green salsa
Instructions
  1. Heat the olive oil over medium in a Dutch oven or soup pot
  2. Add the onions and cook 5 minutes
  3. Stir in the garlic and cook 2 minutes
  4. Drop in chicken and sprinkle with chili powder
  5. Pour in the broth, corn and salsa and mix well
  6. Bring to boil; reduce and simmer for 25 minutes until chicken is done
Notes
This soup is great garnished with cheese, cilantro, sour cream and/or jalapeno peppers

 

Looking for the perfect pot to cook up your next batch of soup? I recommend the Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven. It comes in 11 different colors and is an excellent value for the price.