Spiced Braised Beef and Sweet Potatoes

Great slow cooker recipe for a cold day.  This was a little twist on beef stew that we liked a lot – I turned down the heat on it by cutting the cayenne in half, so you could easily adjust however you like.  Made a lot – leftovers even better the next day.  This came from Real Simple, and though it suggested serving over couscous, we actually skipped that, just ate it as a stew, and it was great that way.

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Stuffed Pepper Soup

As much as I hate it, it is soup and stew weather again.  I first saw this on Skinnytaste and liked the idea, though thought it a bit bland.  Turns out there are a lot of recipes for stuffed pepper soup out there, and this is a mish mash of all of them – forgive the vague measurements.  This was great – I wouldn’t change anything other than potentially lowering the amount of stock I use next time and upping the number of peppers.  Definitely one to add to the cold-weather line up!




Pesto Chicken, Bean and Sausage Soup

So when you make a ton of pesto, you’re eating it for a while.  Not that I’m complaining.  We decided not to freeze this batch of pesto, so it’s been uhm…around a lot the past few days.  This was a soup that we really liked – great way to use up some nice buffalo sausage we’d gotten a few weeks ago at the farmer’s market.  Very filling soup, and great for lunches.  Plus it’s the color of Ecto Cooler from 5th grade, so that’s pretty cool.



Roasted Yellow Pepper Soup

After not-so-fun dental work today, and strict orders not to chew, some kind of soup seemed in order.  Not to mention it was an ugly rainy day…perfect for a yummy soup.  I had gone to a great little cafe with one of my managers a couple of weeks ago, and we’d had a delicious yellow and orange pepper soup – I was dying to try to recreate it, and this was a good opportunity!  This was a mish-mash of a few recipes, but what I liked about the base (from Epicurious) was that it didn’t use cream or milk – the thickness comes from a couple of potatoes.  I used chicken stock in this because that’s what I had, but I think it would be better with vegetable stock and would of course be an easy vegetarian option that way.  It was delicious and healthy…definitely going in the regular rotation!



Spinach and Paneer Dal

This was a recipe I got from Chow, and modified a little bit because a) I had no yellow lentils, and b) I really wanted to add paneer.  I think the addition of paneer was a good one for sure – delish!  But this would have done a little better with yellow split peas – it could have used the bulk.  Still very good, though, and one we’ll make again.  We’d normally serve this over rice or with some naan, though we’re trying to watch the carb overload during Mostly Meatless March.  I paired this with curried roasted cauliflower.



Lentil and Chicken Soup

I spent a couple of weeks hemming and hawing over making this soup because I kept finding things I’d rather make instead.  Mistake!  This was awesome, filling, and very low cal.  I got this from Skinnytaste, where I consistently have good luck.  I tweaked this recipe to use chicken stock instead of water for cooking the lentils to give them some extra flavor.  If you have any homemade stock, that would be even better.  You could make this vegetarian, but I’d bulk it up with some potatoes or another root to give it substance.  This makes a TON of soup, plenty to freeze and take to lunch!



Kale, Sausage, and Black Bean Soup

Flavorful, versatile and filling soup using kale, chicken sausage, and black beans. You could easily substitute cannellini or great northern beans if you like, and you would do just as well with spinach as kale. This made approximately 6 servings, plenty of leftovers for lunch! I chose a chicken sausage with spinach and feta for this, but I think a sundried tomato or Italian would also be nice. We really enjoyed it.



Tomato Basil Soup

I’m really not a fan of tomato soup. Except I can’t turn this one down. This one is Serious Eats attempt at Nordstrom’s rendition of Tomato Basil soup, and I thought it was pretty darn close. It was a perfect dinner on a chilly evening paired with a good old grilled cheese.  I made this recipe as is, with one exception – I substituted light cream for heavy.  We didn’t notice the difference.



New England Clam Chowder

One of my all time favorites, and Shawn’s too…I guess it’s the New England in us both!  This was a great treat on Thanksgiving-eve and we’re thinking it’s a new holiday tradition for us.  This would be excellent with fresh clams, however canned whole baby clams or steamers are perfectly great as well. Definitely a favorite and makes tons of leftovers!


Beef Stew in Spicy Berbere Sauce

Hello November!  Time for stews. 🙂  I love Ethiopian food, so this take on beef stew was fun to make and very tasty.  My  one complaint…way too much cayenne.  I can handle heat, but I felt like this overshadowed the fantastic spice mix that helped to make up the sauce.  That said, I made this with double the liquid and a smidgen of the cayenne compared to the original recipe, so maybe I am becoming a pepper wuss?  Either way, we’ll definitely make this again, but I may use a different method to get a little heat.  This came from Sunset magazine originally, and I served it with steamed rice and Moroccan carrots.