Pioneer Woman’s Corn & Cheese Chowder

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I’ve already shared with you Pioneer Woman’s Corn Chowder with Chilies, which is, as to be expected, delicious. PW excels in comfort food; and as with most comfort food, the more fat, the better. Her Corn & Cheese Chowder is no different. Not even remotely health food, but delicious and perfect for a crisp autumn day lunch with a friend.

I served it with my new go-to bread recipe, which I’ll share tomorrow. Because every soup chef needs to have a couple of easy bread recipes in her (or his) back pocket, right?

African Sweet Potato Soup with Peanut Butter and Black Beans

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This is a unique soup. The flavor combinations are very unexpected, but it’s the kind of surprise that, after I pondered it for a bit, I decided was a very good one. Especially if you happen to like peanut satay, which we both do, very much.

Poor Titus couldn’t weigh in on the whole combo because he’s not allowed to have peanuts yet.

This recipe comes straight from the Gluten-Free Goddess, except I used all black beans because I don’t like Black-Eyed Peas. I’ve tried ’em, and I don’t like ’em. If you happen to try this, let me know what you think!

Curried Coconut Butternut Squash Soup

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It’s soup season again!  Which, hopefully, means that I will be back at the soup blog more regularly. I have, in fact, made a number of soups recently, and I have a super easy one simmering in the crock pot now.

This one, however, I made about a month and a half ago, and it’s a little bit of a stretch for me to remember what I did for it. I do remember that it was delicious (even my 9 month old gobbled it down!) and that I wanted to make a record of it. I used this recipe as my base, but I wanted to add more depth of flavor as my Cook’s Illustrated for that month had indicated (no link, but I’ll describe it), and I also wanted to add coconut milk … because anything with curry tastes better with coconut.

Cream of Tomato Soup — fast and easy!

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Today is one of those transition-to-spring days.  Warm enough to tantalize you, but cold enough that you wouldn’t want to stay outside for long.  I thought it seemed like a soup-for-lunch day.  JR thought it seemed like a sandwich (with melted cheese) day.  What’s the perfect meet-in-the-middle lunch?  Tomato soup with grilled cheese, of course!

Barefoot Contessa’s Chicken Pot Pie

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I made this recipe a while ago, way back before we had Titus, which essentially makes it a lifetime ago.  But a fresh blast of cold weather and snow has got me thinking about comfort food.  Fortunately, I posted a link to the recipe on my Facebook and could go back, back, back, before all the one-month baby pics, before the Christmas family pics, before all the birthday wishes, before the congratulatory wishes … and there was this recipe.  I’ll be making it again for guests tomorrow night … not exactly fancy fare to feed guests, but delicious and hearty and, methinks, appropriate for a day when we’ll be digging out from a pile of snow and braving a high temperature of 10 degrees.

Chicken Pho (Vietnamese Noodle Soup)

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I’m tempted to make a “good pho’ what ails you” joke … and I just did.

Pho is Vietnamese noodle soup (it should have a little squiggly line over the “o,” and it’s pronounced “fuh”).  I was introduced to it while living in Philly and once when I was sick, a friend brought me a big bowl of pho, telling me, “It’s like Asian chicken noodle soup, comfort food when we’re sick.”  Since then, I’ve craved pho when I was sick.  It has all the comfort of traditional chicken noodle soup (though I think pho is generally beef), but it’s lighter and fresher.

Yesterday, I was sick with a cold, as was JR, Titus also has a cold, and my mom was in bed with the flu all day.  Sounds like a pho day to me.

Did you know that there’s supposed to be something in chicken soup that helps clear mucous out of your system? And don’t forget how ridiculously good for you homemade chicken stock is anyway.  Add in some other things that are good pho’ what ails ya as well as the delicious flavor combination, and this is a great soup in sickness and in health.

Creamy White Chili

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This soup was a 110% home run.  I have a standard white chili recipe, one that I’ve loved for years and refer back to time and time again.  Its position, however, is in peril.  I tried this recipe on a whim last night after randomly clicking on a picture on the sidebar at Mel’s Kitchen Cafe.  We were having our small group over for dinner and I was feeling particularly uninspired for a second soup to make (this was soup #1, also a great recipe, easy and healthy, but it was completely overshadowed by the rave reviews for this white chili).

I happened to have all of the ingredients on hand except for enough sour cream to multiply the recipe by 1.5.  I would have had all of the recipes for my standard white chili, but then we would have missed out on the deliciousness that is this new recipe, wouldn’t we? 

Shrimp and Sausage Gumbo

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So I saw some old shrimp in the freezer and wanted to use them this week but didn’t feel like doing my usual shrimp recipe.  I had a hankering for something tomatoey and slightly spicy with the shrimp, which is funny because I’m usually not a tomato-sauce-with-my-shrimp type of girl.  So it was going to be in the Spanish/Portuguese genre; I thought of paella (this is a great recipe, btw), but I wanted something a) less labor-intensive and b) not using white rice, since I’m on a healthy-eating kick.

Chicken Noodle Soup

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I can no longer bear to throw away a chicken carcass because I’ve discovered that the carcass is like hidden gold; you just need a little work and you get what is perhaps the best part of that chicken: stock.

I’m not going to post on it here, but there are tons of health benefits to eating homemade chicken stock (“stock” is made with the bones, while “broth” is made with just meat — the cooking process with the bones gives you all sorts of good minerals and other healthy stuff — google something like “chicken stock health” to learn more). 

Curried Split Pea Soup

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Split Pea Soup is not photogenic; there’s no question about it.  That doesn’t mean, however, that it doesn’t have other very laudable attributes.

I’ve blogged about this soup before, but I made it the other day and thought it was worth mentioning here for several reasons.  One is that it’s a very, very tasty soup: it’s subtle but complex, smooth and I added enough curry to make it a little bit spicy.  Another is that it’s very easy and uses only a few ingredients; I rounded out the meal with some cheese toasts and spinach salad.  Also, split peas are insanely good for you.  Finally, this soup is extremely economical; I didn’t do the math, but I’m betting that it costs only pennies per serving (even less since I used homemade chicken stock, which also adds to the health benefits), and that’s important to me this year as the hubby and I are tightening our belts a bit and living on a tighter budget than we had when I was working full time and he wasn’t yet self-employed.