Apr 022013

Oh yeah, bring on the tasty soup du jour!  This Mushroom potato soup is so simple, robust and flavorful!


Soup du Jour today is to-die for potato mushroom!



3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, smashed paste
1 small yellow onions, diced
4 cups chicken stock
2-3 Yukon gold potatoes, diced
2 oz, shitake mushrooms

2 oz oyster mushrooms
10-12 oz baby portabella mushrooms

3 bay leaf
1/2 cup white wine

1/2 cup heavy cream
kosher salt and pepper to taste


In stock pot: sauté chopped onions in 2T oil until wilted & add garlic paste.

Add diced potatoes, bay leaves and half the chicken stock (2 cups), simmer 20 minutes
In separate pan, warm 2T oil and sliced mushrooms to caramelize 8-10 minutes.

Drain mushroom drippings into potato, onion stock pot & discard bay leaves

Next puree cooked potatoes, onions and broth base with hand immersion blender
Deglaze pan sautéed sliced mushrooms with white wine and add to pureed potato soup base

Add remaining chicken stock, simmer caramelized mushrooms in potato base for 10 minutes
Use an immersion blender again to puree sliced mushrooms. Add heavy cream and stir well


Garnish with dollop of sour crease & chives if desired.  Reserve a small amount of caramelized sliced mushrooms for garnish too. 


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Mar 242013

A pressure cooker is my best friend when it comes to preparing a ragout or stew quickly.  Mouth watering ragout of beef over mashed potatos done in less than 30 minutes. The meat falls apart in your mouth!


My pressure cooker plugs in and features a meat browning mode. High presser is 30lbs of pressure and low is 15lbs.  I cooked the stew beef on high and vegetables on low.  This is a delicious meal that will taste like it took you hours to prepare and clean up is a breeze.  If you appreciate crock pots, try a pressure cooker since you can cook melt-in-your mouth meals in minutes instead of hours!

 Ragout of Beef


  • 1lb Cubed stew beef
  • 1 Med onion (quartered)
  • 1 Cup frozen peas (rinsed\drained\thawed)
  • 3 Large Carrots
  • 3 Celery Stalks
  • 3 Cups beef broth
  • 8oz Tomato Sauce
  • 1 cup white wine (drinking kind!)
  • 2 T flour with 3 parts liquid or butter
  • 3 T Butter
  • Salt to taste


  • Brown meat in pressure cooker or cast iron skillet & set aside with juices
  • Roux of butter and flour was used as a thickener
  • Use meat juices, butter & flour, add a couple T of broth for smooth paste.
  • Add additional broth to roux, beef, wine, tomato sauce & quartered onion to cooker
  • Pressure cook on high for 15 minutes
  • Depressurize & add chopped, 1”cubed potatoes, carrots sticks and chopped celery.
  • Adding vegetables (except peas) to meat\broth & cook again on low pressure 4 more minutes
  • DONE!  Toss in peas after vegetables cook & serve over mashed potatoes.









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Mar 092013

Ahhh vegetable root soup is simple, nutritious and so good!

Celery Jicama Soup

Jicama & Celery Root Soup
Jicama is at starchy root pronounced [HIK-ka-ma].  Also known as yam bean or Mexican water chestnut! Jicama’s inside flesh similar to that of potato with hints of nuttiness and sweet apple undertones.  The nutritional profile comprises of dietary fiber, anti-oxidants and Vitamin C!
Celeriac or root celery is a very good source of Vitamin K and related to the common leaf celery family. It’s grown for it’s knobby underground root though. This root has a flavor profile of celery and parsley which is great in soups, stews or even mashed as a side dish!
  • 2lb Jicama Root, peeled & diced
  • 2lb Celery Root, peeled & diced
  • 3-4 Cups of Chicken stock
  • Dollop of Sour Cream
  • Fresh Basil
  1. Peel and dice both jicama and celery root.
  2. Simmer for 45 minutes in chicken stock until soft
  3. Puree cooked root vegetables in pot
  4. Add chicken stock or a little water if needed
  5. Texture should be smooth like apple sauce
  6. Serve with a dollop of sour cream & sprig of fresh basil

Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6-8


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Feb 112013

Anytime there is a opporuntity to turn leftovers into a new dish, I’m on it! Baked chicken prepared three days ago turns into hearty homemade soup in 30 minutes!

Chicken Soup

Drumsticks, wings and the main carcass were reserved and refrigerated in a zip lock bag until it was soup time. Carcass was deboned with chunks of chicken reserved on a plate to avoid overcooking.

Chicken bones were then simmered with cans of chicken broth, a whole onion and a few bay leaves for 15 minutes. A slotted spoon was used to lift out bones and bay leaves when broth was very flavorful.

Chicken Soup prep

Chopped carrots, celery and one small diced potato were added and simmered for 10 more minutes. Stop cooking once vegetables are tender, but not overcooked. Add all bits of chicken pulled from the bone to the pot of hot soup without cooking further.

Simultaneously I cooked ½ lb of Ditalini pasta separate until al-dente, drained and tossed with olive oil. You can use rice, orzo or any small pasta!  To keep the pasta from becoming mushy, I prepare and store it separately. Pasta is then always added to bowls with hot soup poured over the top.

Tip: A fresh lemon wedge served on the side is great to squeeze a little over hearty chicken noodle soup as a yummy flavor enhancer!

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