Fork Soup.

This is one of those family favorite recipes that not only has been renamed from its original (and rather staid), “Creamy Spinach Chicken Tortellini Soup”  but has also been completely reworked. Starting out as a quick weeknight meal that uses a number of convenience items like canned soup, at some point I had the realization it wasn’t that much harder to cook from scratch – just a little bit of chopping involved really. And because we lean more vegetarian, I started going with cream of mushroom instead of cream of chicken soup. The end result? Still really good while remaining an easy weeknight dinner. Continue reading

PA Dutch Pot Pie

Growing up in Pennsylvania (PA) Dutch country (south central Pennsylvania- York county to be specific) there was probably nothing more confusing to me than “Pot Pie”.  For in that region of the country, what is in the freezer section at the grocery store labeled ‘chicken pot pie’, is in fact, not a true ‘chicken pot pie’ but  ‘chicken pie’.  To PA Dutch, their chicken pot pie is basically chicken soup with big fat homemade egg noodles in it. Being a transplant to the area, it made for some confusion when I saw the school lunch menu or was at a friend’s house. As I soon learned though, it may be confusing to outsiders, but  trust me, their version is even more of a comfort food than that ‘chicken pie’.

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A recommendation.

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It’s January, which means it’s soup weather, as well as cold and flu weather. In order to ward off illnesses threatening to invade our happy home, I made a pot of miso soup the other evening. The larder was rather bare and because the roads were icy, I made due with what I had. The only greens I had were Brussels sprouts, which on first thought, aren’t exactly a good fit for a miso soup. But then I recalled a bowl of soup I had last winter and inspiration struck. Continue reading

Something new.

New Roots Farm has a semi-regular stand at the city market that sells produce grown at the community garden sponsored by the International Resource Committee here in Charlottesville. The garden sprung out of wanting to help refugees feel at home as many of them have a farming background, while also giving refugees access to fresh food, particularly some harder to find items from their home. By selling some of the excess produce, refugees learn new skills and earn some income.  (Here’s a nice article that ran on them this past July) When I see their stand at market, I like to check out what they have to offer because it’s a good opportunity to try something new while also supporting a wonderful project. On a recent visit, this caught my eye:

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Quick Cherry Tomatoes and Pasta.

A gardening friend gave me two Sweet 100 cherry tomato plants that have had us swimming in the teeniest, tinest tomatoes this summer.  I’ve been harvesting a few pints of them weekly and in order to keep up with them, I had to get creative.  I was slightly inspired by a recipe my friend Martha used in her cooking class last month, but because these tomatoes are so tiny that cutting them would be a complete pain (and waste of time), I decided to just throw them in the pan whole.

(They also have a slightly annoying habit of splitting upon being picked.)

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