Bacon Cheeseburger Chowder

ZfTw8xWf13c213336333538313FEvfehL8_1346369211Bacon Cheeseburger Chowder

I know this sounds weird but it does really taste like the old time burger joint burger in soup form.

1 lb. Ground beef, made into 4 patties

1  -14 1/2 oz Fire Roasted diced tomatoes

8 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled

4 Tbsp. butter

1/2 cup finely diced, onion

1 yellow onion diced and set aside

1/4 cup finely diced , carrot

1/4 cup finely diced , celery

1 bay leaf

1/3 cup flour

1-12 oz. bottle Ale

2 1/3 cups whole milk

1- 14oz. can chicken broth

1 tsp. dry mustard

2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 lb. extra sharp cheddar

1 1/2 cups cubed Velveeta cheese

1 large head Romaine Heart , sliced

Sear and cook through the hamburger patties in a large saucepan. Cut into bite size pieces about the size of a quarter. Set aside. You want patties because the seared patties have more service area that’s browned to create the burger flavor.

In the same pan the burgers were cooked, drain of extra fat ,leaving about 2 tablespoons over medium heat quick saute the diced yellow onion, do not cook through. Remove from pan and set aside. Melt butter; add finely diced onion , carrot , celery and bay leaf cook and stir often, until vegetables are translucent and softened. Stir in flour and cook about 3 minutes.

Slowly whisk in beer, milk , chicken stock, roasted tomatoes with the juice and mustards. Bring to simmer , stirring often to prevent scorching. Add grated cheese a handful at a time; stir until cheese has melted. Important not to let boil. Remove bay leaf. Salt and pepper to taste. If a thicker soup is desired whisk in over low heat , Wondra flour whisking constantly until thickened. Add Velveeta cheese and stir in until melted along with the sauteed onion and cut up hamburger patties and bacon that were set aside. Add sliced Romaine lettuce at the end and stir in.

Serve with crumbled bacon on top, sliced scallions and shredded cheddar cheese.

Chinese Clay Pot Chicken

Chinese Clay Pot Chicken

1 1/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts

salt as needed

black pepper to taste

2/3 cup water

1/2 cup fish sauce

1/3 cup packed brown sugar

1 tablespoon canola oil

6 sprigs cilantro, chopped including stems

2 Thai bird chiles, chopped

1 tsp. minced garlic

1 tsp. minced fresh ginger

1 tsp lime juice

1 tsp. red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves

Cut chicken into 1/2 inch cubes. Season well with salt and pepper.

Stir together the water, fish sauce, brown sugar, oil, cilantro, chiles, ginger, lime juice and vinegar in a small bowl until dissolved.

Put chicken in soaked clay pot. pour fish sauce mixture over chicken.

Put clay pot in cold oven and set temperature to 400 degrees. Cook until chicken is tender and juices coat chicken. Garnish with cilantro and serve over noodle or rice.

Cremini Mushroom and Barley Soup

htHSZfTw13c2133363335323338Or71oqQ_1346368858Cremini Mushroom and Barley Soup

1 Tablespoon oil

1 onion, diced finely

1 carrot, peeled and diced finely

1 celery stalk, diced finely

1 parsnip, peeled , diced finely

3 cups /10 oz. cremini mushrooms , sliced

2 quarts chicken stock

3/4 cup pearl barley

1/2 tsp. salt or to taste

1/2 pepper or to taste

1 Tablespoon chopped parsley

2 Tablespoons dry sherry

Heat oil in soup pot and add onion. Saute about 10 minutes until golden. Add the carrot, parsnip ,celery and mushrooms. Stir until combined well with onions. Cover and turn heat to low and cook for 3-4 minutes.

Remove the cover and add stock and barley. Simmer for about 30 minutes or until barley is tender,

Adjust seasonings. Stir in parsley. Stir in sherry , just before serving.

This soup tastes even better if made a day in advance.

Garbanzo Bean Soup


8 cups water

1 lb. dried garbanzo beans

2 lbs. smoked ,meaty ham shank

1 large onion , chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 Tablespoon instant beef bouillon

1 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. pepper

1/8 tsp cayenne

3 medium potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

1 small head cabbage, about 1 lb., coarsely chopped

1/4 cup chopped parsley

Heat water and beans to boiling in dutch oven; boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat and cover and let stand 1 hour. Add ham shank, onion, garlic, bouillon, salt, pepper and red pepper to beans. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until beans are almost tender. Skim fat if needed.

Remove ham shank; cool slightly. Trim fay and bones from ham. Cut ham into 1/2 inch pieces. Stir ham, potatoes and cabbage into soup. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until beans and potatoes are tender. Stir in chopped parsley.

Beef Fajita Soup with Fried Corn Tortilla Strips , Cotija Cheese and Crema


1- 15 oz. Black beans or kidney beans , drained and rinsed

1 tablespoon Olive oil

1 yellow onion , diced

4 garlic cloves, minced

3 bell peppers(1 each of a yellow, orange and red bell pepper, coarsely chopped)

2 tablespoons chile powder

1 1/2 tsp. chipotle chile powder, adjust to your taste

2 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. ground coriander

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1- 14 1/2 oz. fire roasted diced tomatoes

1 quart Chicken stock

2 tsp. chopped cilantro

salt and pepper to taste

1 1/4 lbs. flat iron steak. Season with salt and pepper

8-10 corn tortillas, sliced and fried

cotija cheese

Crema or sour cream

In a large soup pot , saute in the olive oil the , onions, bell peppers and garlic until tender. Add the chile powder, chipotle powder, cumin,and  coriander to the soup pot. Stir in to combine then, add roasted tomatoes and tomato paste. Saute until combined. Stir in chicken stock and simmer. Meanwhile, sear the steaks until well seared and golden brown . Set aside to rest. The meat will not be fully cooked. Stir in drained beans to soup pot. After meat has rested for about 10 minutes, slice thinly against the grain. Add to simmering soup and cook until meat is medium rare and stir in chopped cilantro.

Garnish with crema , fried corn tortillas and cotija cheese.

*Adjust chipotle pepper powder to your own taste

Tuscan Bean and Barley Soup


2 tablespoons Olive Oil

4 oz. pancetta, diced

1 onion, diced

2 carrots, peeled, diced

2 celery ribs, diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

4 fresh sage leaves or 2 tsp. dried

1/2 tsp. dried marjoram

6 cups cooked white beans or 3 can undrained white beans

1 cup , peeled , seeded and chopped fresh tomatoes or canned diced

salt and pepper to taste

1 cup barley

chicken stock to thin out soup if needed

Olive oil for drizzling

In a large skillet , saute the pancetta until golden. Add the carrots, onions and celery, saute until tender. Stir in garlic , sage and marjoram.

In soup pot add vegetables and beans. On very low heat simmer until vegetables are completely tender. Remove beans and vegetables to blender and blend until mixture is slightly smooth with some coarse bits. Return blended mixture to soup pot along with barley. Cover and simmer slowly until barley is tender. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil.

Red Portuguese Sopa

htHSZfTw13c2133363334333738Or71oqQ_1346368343Red Portuguese Sopa

5-6 lbs. beef chuck roast

3 onions, chopped

1/2 bell pepper, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 -15 oz. can tomato sauce

1 large can whole tomatoes

2 bay leaves

1 small head cabbage, sliced or shredded

2 tsp. pickling spices

2 tsp. paprika

1 tablespoon vinegar

1 cup wine

4 tsp. soy sauce

4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

2 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. pepper

Mint sprigs

French Bread

Salt to taste

Add 3-4 quarts chicken or beef stock to all ingredients, place pickling spices in tea strainer or cheesecloth bundle to pot, except the cabbage. When meat is almost done, (tender) add cabbage and finish cooking until tender.

Layer the meat and cabbage with french bread and pour broth over top and a bit of mint. Let stand a few minutes before serving.

French Country Smoked Ham Pot


1 lb. dried cannellini beans, rinsed and sorted

1 -3lb. shank-end smoked ham

1 bag frozen small boiling onions

2 garlic cloves., chopped

1 tablespoon Dijon Mustard

1 Thyme sprig

1 bay leaf

Black pepper, to taste

sea salt , to taste

6 carrots, peeled and cut into 2inch lengths

1 lb. small red potatoes, peeled but left whole

3 leeks, white and pale green parts only, cut into 2 inch lengths

7 oz. green beans trimmed

1 bunch flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

Soak bean overnight in water. The next day, drain and rinse well.

Place ham in large dutch oven, cover with water and bring to simmer and cook 10 minutes.Drain and discard water. Return the ham to the dutch oven ,add beans , onions, garlic, mustard, thyme, bay leaf and pepper. Barely cover with water, then gently bring to boil, skimming off any residue. Cover and simmer for 1 1/2 hours.

Add carrots, potatoes and leeks to the pot, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Check the seasoning. Add green beans and parsley and cook 5 minutes. Lift ham from stock and place on carving board and slice. Serve with stock and vegetables.

Creamy Carrot and Jalapeno Soup


2 tablespoons olive oil

2 medium onions, chopped

6 celery stalks, sliced

6 carrots, peeled, sliced

5 jalapeno chiles, halved and seeded and membranes removed

6 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 cup uncooked brown rice

1/4 tsp. allspice

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

1/8 tsp. nutmeg

8 cups chicken stock

1/2 cup heavy cream

salt and pepper , to taste

1 cup grated sharp cheddar

1 cup grated pepper jack cheese

Sliced green onions, for garnish

Heat oil in large saucepan on medium heat. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add celery, carrots, jalapenos and garlic to cook and when carrots begin to soften.

Add rice, allspice, nutmeg and cinnamon, cook for 2 minutes and stir in chicken stock, bring to boil.

Reduce heat to simmer until vegetables and rice are very tender, about 45 minutes.

Remove from heat and puree with a blender in small batches until smooth. Return soup to low heat and stir in cream and grated cheese, season with salt and pepper, to taste

Garnish with some shredded cheese and sliced green onions.

Zuppa Tuscana

hL8TaGqg13c213336333237343fehL8TaG_1346365290Zuppa Tuscana

1 lb. Italian Sausage

2 large russet potatoes, 1/4 inch dice

1 large onion , sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 -32 oz. chicken stock

1 cup heavy cream

2 bunches kale, chopped

parmesan cheese

salt and pepper, to taste

1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

Brown sausage in large soup pot. Remove sausage and set aside. To the pot add stock, potatoes, onion and garlic, bring to boil. Simmer until potatoes are tender. Add cream ans sausage to pot and warm through. Add kale right before serving. Top with parmesan.