Greens and Roasted Vegetables Soup

I don’t know what to call this soup. Greens and Roasted Vegetables Soup sounds too healthful, and I’m afraid it might scare some away (although, to be fair, it is as healthful as it sounds). All I know is that it is super tasty and versatile and I’m kind of obsessed with it. This version is slightly adapted (and adaptable) from Against All Grain. The first time I made it, I didn’t have butternut squash, so I doubled the sweet potato. I’ve swapped out kale for spinach and turkey broth for chicken broth. Today I didn’t have chicken and discovered that it’s just as good without. Versatile.

  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cubed
  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 1 small onion, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups chicken (or turkey or vegetable) stock
  • 2-3 cups shredded chicken or 1 pound uncooked chicken breasts
  • ¾ teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ½ teaspoon dried rosemary
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon cracked pepper
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cups spinach
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Toss the vegetables in the olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.
  3. Meanwhile, bring the chicken stock to a simmer in a large stockpot. Add the chicken, herbs, and salt and pepper. Cover and cook while the vegetables are roasting, about 15 minutes. For raw chicken breasts, cook for about 45 minutes, until chicken is cooked through and tender enough to shred with a fork.
  4. Add half the vegetables to the soup, and place the other half in a blender. Make sure to put all of the onions quarters into the blender. Puree the vegetables with the 1 cup of water.
  5. Add the vegetable puree and spinach to the soup. Simmer for 5-10 minutes, until the spinach is wilted and the soup is hot. Adjust seasonings to your taste.

 

Suzy’s Mashed Red Potatoes

I whipped up Suzy’s Mashed Red Potatoes to accompany a spiral ham, whole green beans and cooked carrots for Christmas Day 2013. I used the recipe as a guideline, but I know I added more potatoes and garlic to this recipe. It’s easy to fiddle with and hard to forget. Yum.

  • 2 pounds small red potatoes, quartered
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add potatoes, and cook until tender but still firm, about 10 minutes. Drain, and place in a large bowl.
  2. Combine potatoes with butter, milk, sour cream, salt, and pepper. Mash together until smooth and creamy.

Caramel Corn

I made this for our church Christmas party and it earned a few rave reviews. The recipe is altered slightly from this one over at allrecipes.com. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • cooking spray
  • two bags popped popcorn
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup butter OR margarine
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Spray large shallow roasting pan with cooking spray. Add popcorn and place in preheated 250 degrees F oven while preparing caramel.
  2. Mix brown sugar, corn syrup, butter and salt in a heavy 2-quart saucepan. Stirring constantly, bring to a boil over medium heat.
  3. Boil 5 minutes without stirring. Remove from heat. Stir in baking soda and vanilla; mix well.
  4. Pour syrup over warm popcorn, stirring to coat evenly.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from oven and spread on foil that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
  6. Cool; break apart. Store in tightly covered container.