Thursday, October 15, 2009

October: Winter Soups and Quick Breads

Another vastly successful cooking club meeting--thanks to everyone for sharing such deliciousness with us, and thanks especially to April for hosting. Below please find the pictures of tonight's amazing feast, recipes will be appearing during the next week.

The next meeting will be on Thursday November 12th at 7:30, the theme is holiday-themed appetizers and Thanksgiving specialities. Find a fun and festive appetizer recipe to try, or if you have a highly-coveted Thanksgiving dish that you're dying to share, bring that.


2 Tbl oil
1 large onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups sliced carrots
1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
7 cups broth (chicken, beef or vegetable)
1 tsp thyme
1 bay leaf
1 winter squash (pumpkin, butternut, etc), peeled and cut into small cubes
1 15 oz can white beans
1 bunch greens (swiss chard, spinach, kale, etc) washed and chopped

Your favorite meatball recipe

Cook meatballs and set aside (or, skip 'em and enjoy a vegetarian stew). Saute onions and garlic in oil until translucent, add carrots and mushrooms. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes or until vegetables begin to carmelize; this is what lends a deep flavor to the soup. Add broth, thyme, bay leaf and squash; cover and simmer over medium-low heat for 30-40 minutes until squash and carrots are tender. Add chopped greens and simmer 5-10 minutes until tender. Add beans and cooked meatballs, and continue cooking until soup is fully heated.


7 cups peeled and diced potatoes
2/3 cup diced celery
2/3 cup finely chopped onion
1-1/2 cups diced cooked ham
6-1/2 cups water
1/4 cup chicken bouillon granules
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
2 teaspoons ground white or black pepper, or to taste
1/2 cup and 2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup and 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups milk

Combine the potatoes, celery, onion, ham and water in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the chicken bouillon, salt and pepper.

In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour with a fork, and cook, stirring constantly until thick, about 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk as not to allow lumps to form until all of the milk has been added. Continue stirring over medium-low heat until thick, 4 to 5 minutes.

Stir the milk mixture into the stockpot, and cook soup until heated through. Serve immediately.

This was one of the most popular flavors!

32 oz chicken broth
1 regular can green chili enchilada sauce
3 bell peppers (1 of each color) diced
1 onion diced
JalapeƱo to liking- optional
1 rotisserie chicken- shredded
1 bunch of cilantro cut up
3 cans great northern beans- undrained

Mix all together in pan cook for about 30 min or until onions are cooked. Garnish with mozzarella cheese, sour cream and avocado then eat with chips


Lemon Loaf

½ cup butter
1 cup sugar
grated rind of one lemon
1 ½ cups flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 ¼ teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs, beaten
½ cup milk

Juice of one lemon
1/3 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a loaf pan. Cream butter and sugar. Add egg and mix well. Sift dry ingredients and add alternately with milk to the mixture. Pour into a loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until done.
Mix topping together and drizzle on top of loaf while still warm.

Pumpkin Bread

4 eggs
½ cup vegetable oil
1 16 oz. can pumpkin
3 ½ cups flour
3 cups sugar
½ cup water
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch of cloves
Nuts and raisins (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two bread pans. Beat eggs. Add oil, water and pumpkin. Mix well. Sift dry ingredients. Add to mixture. Pour mixture into 2 loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 10 minutes. Yields 2 loaves.

Carrot Bread

3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 cups sugar
¾ teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups grated carrot
1 cup vegetable oil
1 can crushed pineapple, drained (8 oz.)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Combine first 6 ingredients, stirring well. Combine eggs and remaining 4 ingredients; add to flour mixture, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened.
Spoon batter into two greased and floured 8 ½ x 4 ½ inch loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks for 10 minutes; remove from pans and cool on wire racks.
Yields: 2 loaves



2 tablespoons plus 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats, or quick-cooking (not instant) oats, divided
1 1/3 cups whole-wheat flour, or white whole-wheat flour (see Tip)
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
8 ounces (scant 1 cup) nonfat or low-fat plain yogurt
1 large egg
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup clover honey, or other mild honey
3/4 cup nonfat or low-fat milk

Position rack in middle of oven; preheat to 375°F. Generously coat a 9-by-5-inch (or similar size) loaf pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon oats in the pan. Tip the pan back and forth to coat the sides and bottom with oats.

Thoroughly stir together whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Using a fork, beat the remaining 1 cup oats, yogurt, egg, oil and honey in a medium bowl until well blended. Stir in milk. Gently stir the yogurt mixture into the flour mixture just until thoroughly incorporated but not overmixed (excess mixing can cause toughening). Immediately scrape the batter into the pan, spreading evenly to the edges. Sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon oats over the top.

Bake the loaf until well browned on top and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes. (It’s normal for the top to crack.) Let stand in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Run a table knife around and under the loaf to loosen it and turn it out onto the rack. Let cool until barely warm, about 45 minutes.


8 cups fat-free chicken broth
1 onion, finely chopped
8 portions chicken breast (about 2 lbs.)
2 pkgs. Knorr Roasted chicken gravy mix
3 cans (7oz. each) mild diced green chilies
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
2 jalapenos, seeded and chopped
1 can (28 oz) white hominy, drained
1 tomato, diced
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
8 (6") flour tortillas

1. In a large pot, combine chicken breasts, chicken broth and onion. Heat to boiling over high heat. then reduce heat to low and simmer until the chicken is no longer pink in the center - about 20 minutes. Remove chicken from broth and set aside to cool.
2. Use a whisk to blend gravy mix into the broth. then add chilies, garlic, cilantro, cumin, jalapenos and hominy. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; then reduce heat to low.
3. Shred the chicken by pulling it apart with two forks, and add it back into the broth. Cover and simmer for 40 minutes.
4. Warm flour tortillas by placing them between 2 damp paper towels and microwaving for 45 seconds.
5. Spoon a portion of the green chili into each bowl, top with a spoonful of diced tomato and a tablespoon of sour cream.


1 (2 1/2 to 3-pound) fryer chicken, cut up
3 1/2 quarts water
1 onion, peeled and diced
1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon lemon-pepper seasoning
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 bay leaves
3-6 chicken bouillon cubes
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups sliced carrots
2 cups sliced celery, with leafy green tops

2 1/2 cups uncooked elbow noodles
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1 cup grated Parmesan, optional
3/4 cup heavy cream, optional
Seasoning salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Crusty French bread, for serving


For the stock: add all ingredients to a soup
pot. Cook until chicken is tender, about 35 to 45 minutes. Remove chicken from pot and set aside to cool. Remove and discard bay leaves and onion. You should have approximately 3 quarts of stock. When chicken is cool enough to touch, pick bones clean, discarding bones, skin, and cartilage. Set chicken aside.

For the soup: bring stock back to a boil, add carrots, and cook for 3 minutes. Add celery and continue to cook for 5 to 10 minutes. Add elbow noodles and cook according to directions on package. When noodles are done, add
chicken, parsley and rosemary. Add Parmesan and cream, if using. Cook for another 2
minutes. Adjust seasoning, if needed, by adding seasoning salt and pepper. Enjoy along with a nice hot crusty loaf of French bread.


1 pound shredded, cooked chicken
1 (15 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, mashed
1 (10 ounce) can enchilada sauce
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chile peppers
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups water
1 (14.5 ounce) can chicken broth
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 bay leaf
1 (10 ounce) package frozen corn
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
7 corn tortillas
vegetable oil

Place chicken, tomatoes, enchilada sauce, onion, green chiles, and garlic into a slow cooker. Pour in water and chicken broth, and season with cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper, and bay leaf. Stir in corn and cilantro. Cover, and cook on Low setting for 6 to 8 hours or on High setting for 3 to 4 hours.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Lightly brush both sides of tortillas with oil. Cut tortillas into strips, then spread on a baking sheet.
Bake in preheated oven until crisp, about 10 to 15 minutes. To serve, sprinkle tortilla strips over soup.


1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 cup cucumber, peeled and cut into pieces
1 tbs fresh onion
1/2 cup ice cubes
Salt & Pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in blender. Turn on medium, then high for 1.5 minutes, or until smooth. Serve immediately. Some variations: add avocado or coconut milk to thicken it. Add lime or lemon juice, with a bit of zest, a for citrusy kick. Add cilantro or dill, or blend in the white part of green onions or garlic.


1 can chicken broth
1 small onion, diced
1/3 c. flour
1/4 c. butter
Pepper to taste (I used about 1/2 teaspoon)

2 c. milk (I used 1% with great results)
1 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 c. shredded swiss cheese
steamed chopped broccoli )

Simmer chicken broth and chopped onion for 15-20 minutes in a covered small saucepan, until onions are soft. Heat milk in microwave for 1-2 minutes. In a separate medium-sized stockpot, melt butter then add flour and pepper. Cook together for a couple of minutes, then whisk in warmed milk. Stir and heat together on medium-high heat until soup starts to thicken. Next add chicken broth and continue to stir until well blended. Add cheeses and steamed broccoli. Serve immediately.


2 lbs. beef chuck
1/4 C. flour
1 t. salt
1/4 t. black pepper
3 T. veggie oil
2 T. butter
1 large onion, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
2 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1/4 C. red wine vinegar
1/4 C. water
2 C. beef broth
1/4 C. balsamic vinegar
1 bay leaf
6-8 large fresh sage leaves, washed and dried
1 lb. butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1/2 lb. parsnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1/2 lb. Roma tomatoes, peeled, cored seeded, and diced
Chopped parsley, for garnish

1. Cut the beef into 1-inch cubes, trimming away any gristle or excess fat.

2. On a piece of waxed paper or in a plastic food storage bag, combine the flour, salt, and pepper. Turn the beef cubes in the flour mixture to coat them evenly, or place them in the food storage bag and shake until they are coated.

3. In a wide, heavy saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the beef cubes and saute until evenly browned on all sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove the beef and set it aside.

4. Reduce the heat to medium and, in the same saucepan, melt the butter. Add the onion and garlic and saute until translucent, about 3 minutes.

5. Add the red wine vinegar and water. With a wooden spoon, stir and scrape to deglaze the pan deposits. Return the meat to the pan. Add the beef stock, balsamic vinegar, and bay leaf. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan and simmer gently for 1 hour.

6. Cut the sage leaves into chiffonade strips and stir them into the sauce along with the butternut squash, parsnips, carrots, and tomatoes. Cover the pan again and continue simmering until both the meat and the vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes longer. Remove the bay leaf and correct the seasonings with salt and pepper to taste. Ladle the stew into large warmed bowls and garnish with chopped parsley.


1 cup sugar
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 3 ripe bananas)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 C frozen raspberries

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour bottom only of a loaf pan (or use 3 small loaf pans). In a large bowl, beat together sugar and oil. Add eggs, bananas, sour cream and vanilla; blend well. Lightly spoon flour into measuring cup; level off. Add flour, baking soda and salt; stir just until dry ingredients are moistened. Lastly add 1 C raspberries and fold into mix. Pour into prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes (about 40 minutes for smaller loaf pan) or until toothpick inserted in center comes clean. Cool 5 minutes; remove from pan. Cool completely. Wrap tightly and store in refrigerator. Makes 1 loaf.

Tara Banks wasn't able to make it on Thursday but HIGHLY recommended these two recipes from Cooking Light Magazine:


1 package dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
1/2 cup warm water (100° to 110°)
5 cups all-purpose flour (about 22 1/2 ounces)
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
2 cups low-fat buttermilk
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon butter, melted
Dissolve the yeast in 1/2 cup warm water in a small bowl, and let stand for 5 minutes.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients (through salt) in a large bowl. Cut in shortening with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add yeast mixture and buttermilk to flour mixture; stir just until moist. Cover and chill 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 450°.

Turn the dough out onto a heavily floured surface; knead lightly 5 times. Roll dough to a 1/2-inch thickness; cut with a 2 1/2-inch biscuit cutter. (I usually just use a cup) Place the biscuits on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Brush the melted butter over the biscuit tops. Bake at 450° for 12 minutes or until golden.


Cooking spray
1 cup thinly sliced celery
3/4 cup diced carrot
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
3 cups marinara sauce
1 cup canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
3/4 cup uncooked ditalini (very short tube-shaped macaroni)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 ounces cooked skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into small chunks or shredded
6 tablespoons shaved fresh Parmesan cheese
Heat a Dutch oven over medium heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add celery, carrot, and onion to pan; cook 12 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Add broth and next 4 ingredients (through pepper); bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 12 minutes or until pasta is tender. Add chicken to pan Sprinkle with cheese.