Sweet Potato Soup

February 13, 2014 § Leave a comment

Recipes are not something I memorize. They’re typically used once or twice or just not often enough for my brain to make space for.  I simply have to look it up or thumb through my stack when I want to re-make something. This soup is an exception.

I found it one afternoon when I had an extra sweet potato on hand and wanted a smooth, flavorful soup. Since then I have made it multiple times; for company, to have leftovers for work or when I have a craving for a delicious soup. It’s committed to memory.

It’s also a pretty forgiving recipe. Don’t have vegetable broth? Use chicken. Don’t have chicken? Use turkey. Have some extra spices you’d like to add, sure. Want to mix it up and stir in some cream at the very end, by all means, that is delicious.

We start with the best of all, bacon. Fry up three or four pieces in a large soup pot. (I use my dutch over). Take out, let cool, then chop into little pieces (BACON BITS!). Leaving all that beautiful bacon grease in the bottom (or taking some out depending on how you feel about it). Put your chopped onions in the bottom, sautéing until soft, making sure to scrape up the brown bits. Finally, add in the sweet potatoes, spices and broth. Boil until soft, puree and you are in business.

This soup also begs for garnish. I often use bacon bits, chives, cheese. I think a little chopped thyme or freshly cracker pepper would be great too. Add a grilled cheese and salad and you have my favorite meal of ALL time.

Ingredients

  • 2-3 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 large, yellow onion
  • 4 pieces of thick bacon
  • 6 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt & pepper, seasoning (I like 21 Seasoning Salute from Trader Joes)
  • Garnish – chives, parmesan cheese, fresh herbs

To Make

1) Wash and peel sweet potatoes. Cut sweet potatoes into 1-inch pieces. Dice the onion. Set these aside.

2) In large soup pot or dutch oven, fry the bacon until medium-crispy. Set aside, when cool, cut into small pieces and save for garnish.

3) In the same pot, fry the onion until soft and translucent. Once ready, add in broth and sweet potato and seasoning. Bring to a boil, then simmer about 20 minutes or until sweet potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork. Remove bay leaf and puree using an immersion blender until soup is smooth.

4) Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour into bowls and garnish to your heart’s content. Enjoy!

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Overnight Steel Cut Oats

February 6, 2014 § Leave a comment

It’s cold season over here you guys. I’ve worked my way through a box of Kleenex and am drinking daily cocktails of honey and lemon in hot water. This calls for comfort in the form of warm breakfast.

I have made this steel-cut oat recipe consistently for the last two months. I take leftovers for breakfast at work. I made it for my family where even my nephew, who is three, ate it. And this calls for some awesome toppings. You can go simple with fruit like bananas or sautéed pears (which I feature here). Or go nuts and add peanut butter, chia seeds, dried apricots. Do what you want.

I get my oats from the bulk section, where they are way cheaper that the pre-packaged versions. **Side note, did you know you can bring a canister to Whole Foods, they’ll weigh it for you, then you can just fill it in the bulk section. Has made my guesswork of filling cheap plastic bags and ending up with too much or too little of something non-existent, so nice.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup steel cut oats
  • 1 cup milk option of your choice (I like almond milk)
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1 ripe pear, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • sweetener (agave or brown sugar)

1) In medium saucepan, toast steel-cut oats over medium heat until they smell slightly nutty. About 3 minutes. Pour in 3 cups of water and bring to a boil. Immediately remove from heat and let sit, covered, overnight.
2) In the morning add 1 cup of milk choice to pan, and reheat. Stirring occasionally.
3) In a small pan, melt butter. Add in pear and saute until golden brown and fragrant.
4) Spoon oatmeal into bowl, top with pears and add sweetener to taste. Enjoy!

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