October 11th, 2009

cooking, food

Beautiful soups

Yesterday morning was a bit on the cold and rainy side... a good day to make soup! Two kinds of soup, actually. The first was one of my old standbys, Chicken and Mushroom Chowder. Instead of the 3 cups of chicken broth and ½ cup of water called for in the recipe, I just use two full cans of low-sodium broth, which works out about the same.

My second soup was Slow Cook Taco Soup. I used ¾ pound of ground beef instead of a full pound.¹ Also, I don't like olives, so I didn't put those in. Because I forgot to buy tomato juice when I was at the supermarket and my corner market didn't have any,² I used the liquid from a can of whole tomatoes. And then because I didn't have anything better to do with them, I mashed up the tomatoes and added them to the pot as well. The verdict: pretty good. It's more like chili than a taco, but whatever.

That I made the latter soup was kind of an accident. A week ago or so, I found a recipe for a taco soup, and had written down and bought the necessary ingredients. But when I went to find the recipe again, it didn't match the ingredients I had. That did not deter me; I assumed I had neglected to write down the things I had not purchased. And I was certain it was the right recipe, because the advanced ingredient search showed only one recipe that called for both a packet of ranch dressing mix and of taco seasoning. Anyway, this afternoon as I was eating a bowl of the slow cooker taco soup for lunch, I was leafing through a cookbook and, lo and behold, there was the taco soup recipe I had originally planned to make. Oops. A project for another rainy day, I guess.


¹ Acting on a tip from Melissa d'Arabian, I divided a big six-pound pack of ground beef into eight ¾ packets before freezing it. You don't notice the missing 4 oz. and it makes the meat last a third longer.

² But they did have lychee juice, which struck me as rather odd.
  • Current Music
    The Roches - Star of Wonder

Art on Sunday: Saint Catherine of Alexandria

Raphael (1483 – 1520)
Saint Catherine of Alexandria, ca. 1507
Oil on wood
Raphael. St. Catherine of Alexandria
National Gallery, London

This woman looks more like someone from Alexandria, Virginia, than Alexandria, Egypt, but who am I to criticize a genius like Raphael?

Incidentally, if you are reading this, St. Catherine is probably your patron saint. She is the patron of teachers, unmarried women, lawyers, librarians, nurses, students, and scholars -- more than half of the people on my LJ friends lists falls into one or more of those categories.
  • Current Music
    The Roches - Jingle Bells