Cream of Broccoli Soup

Kelsey called me the other day and said, “Mom, the recipe for broccoli soup is not on the blog.” Hmm, well that is because there is no recipe. I always make it up as I go, usually to use up leftover broccoli.

So, here is basically what I told her.

In a 2 quart saucepan over medium heat, melt 2 Tbsp. butter or butter and olive oil

Saute until softened:
1 small onion, diced
1 carrot, sliced thinly
1 stalk celery, sliced thinly

Add 2-3 cups of water or vegetable or chicken broth. If using water, add 1 tsp. bouillon.

Add 1 small potato (optional)
Broccoli (if uncooked)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/4 tsp. garlic power, optional
Simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes.

Blend this up with an immersion blender.

Add milk or half and half, to desired creaminess (about 1 cup). If you would like a thicker soup, blend 2 Tbsp. flour with 3-4 Tbsp. water. Stir the slurry into the soup a little at a time until desired thickness. The soup must be allowed to almost boil before the flour will thicken.

Serve with grated cheddar cheese.

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Reuben Crisps

Mini Reubens for appetizers

Rye Cocktail Bread
6 oz. corned beef or pastrami, sliced very thin
1 cup grated swiss cheese
Thousand Island Dressing
1/2 cup sauerkraut mixed with 1 Tbsp. dressing, optional

Preheat oven to 400F

Place 24 slices of bread on a cookie sheet, toast in oven for 5 minutes.

Spread approximately 1 teaspoon thousand island dressing on each piece of bread.

Layer on a piece of meat, folding to fit the bread. Top with sauerkraut, if using, and a sprinkle of shredded cheese.

Bake 5-10 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly and just beginning to brown.

Serve immediately.

Pizza Monkey Bread

I Stumbled upon this recipe some time ago on The Sweets Life blog. I made it for as an appetizer for a dinner gathering and it was quite a success. I adapted the recipe slightly, for clear instructions and beautiful pictures, see their site.

Ingredients:
3-4 cloves garlic, crushed
4 Tbsp. butter
1 recipe pizza dough made with Italian Seasoning added to the dough (2 lbs. purchased pizza dough)
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, cut into small cubes
Pepperoni, about 48 slices
2 cups marinara sauce for dipping

Make the pizza dough and allow to rise in fridge until ready to use. It took about 30 minutes to make all the little balls, then the “bread” needs to sit for another 30 minutes before baking. Since I was driving an hour to my destination, I put this in a cooler.

In a small saucepan, slowly heat the garlic and butter until the garlic just begins to turn golden. Brush the garlic butter on the inside of a bundt pan.

Pull of small balls of dough, flatten. Place a cube of cheese and a slice of pepperoni on each. Fold the dough around the filling, sealing well, forming into a ball.

Brush the each pizza ball with garlic butter and layer into the bundt pan.

Cover and allow to site for 30 minutes. Bake in a preheated oven, at 400F for 35 minutes. Cool 10 minutes, invert on a plate and serve with sauce for dipping.

Process note:
I found pulling the pieces off one at a time tedious, so I cut the dough in half. Using half at a time, it into little balls all at once using a bench scraper. With all the little balls lined up, I quickly topped each with a piece of cheese and some with pepperoni, then just pressed the filling in, and formed them into rounds. My hands were quite oily with the butter so everything held together very well.