September 27, 2010

Vegetable and Rice Soup

I kicked off this weekend's adventures with a trip to the farmer's market. I've been meaning to go for weeks now. I finally saw Food Inc. this week, and apparently that was all the motivation I needed. Great film, by the way, as are the books by both authors featured. Full disclosure, though: I did eat a bowl of Smacks during the movie. Apparently, it was convincing enough to get me up at 7:30 on a Saturday morning, but not enough to keep me from eating things with 40+ ingredients.


Back to my market trip: I managed to resist the temptation of the crazy juices, donuts, bagels, and homemade pastries (are we sure that organic cream puffs aren't good for me? Really sure?) and mostly stick to my list. I made it back to my car loaded down with fresh eggs, tons of herbs that I will try my hardest not to kill, plenty of delicious things to dip in hummus, and grass-fed beef.

In celebration of delicious things, lunch was maybe the most amazing poached egg I've ever had, soaked up by a crusty piece of bread and topped with fresh rosemary. Dinner was the first burger I've had in a couple years (I think), on a flaky roll and topped with orange-dyed cheese that comes individually wrapped and somehow melts before any contact with heat. Things like this find their way home when you live with boys. The beef, though, was delicious.

I had planned to share my favorite recipe for pizza dough, but the vegetables and densely seeded homemade bread I came home with were just begging to become a pot of soup (with, um, bread. Which does not go in the soup.).
How could this not turn out well?
You see the garlic, right?

This soup is my go-to guy for any number of occasions: when it's cold out, when I accidentally buy way more vegetables that we'll normally eat, when I realize that the boy hasn't eaten anything green in a week. I've been making it for so long that it was weird to go back and look at the original recipe. No oregano? That's sometimes the only spice I add! What do you mean a small zucchini, I usually add two! I actually made this soup with beet greens instead of spinach once and ended up with a bright purple concoction. It was delicious, but I couldn't convince anyone else to try it. I think there's still some of that batch in my freezer.

September 20, 2010

Orange-Vanilla Spiced Applesauce

I  hate that everything you buy at the grocery has tons of sugar added. Drives me nuts. It means I have to wash the sugar coating off dried cranberries before I use them, and it leads me to do things like stand in a crowded condiment aisle, muttering angrily to myself about how I guess I'll have to learn to make my OWN damn ketchup.

This is misleading

And this no-sugar added nonsense is no better. Calorie free marshmallow topping? Not natural. Full disclosure: I eat dessert every single day. Sometimes I literally eat dessert for dinner (seems efficient, no?). I cook with things like cream, butter, and chocolate, and I shamelessly lick beaters without even scraping them first. But. I do not like for my desserts to masquerade as health food. It's confusing, and it creeps me out. Similarly, no matter how hard woman's  magazines insist that it's true, apple slices do not quell cravings for chocolate ice cream . Let's just accept that dessert and health foods are two separate things (frozen bananas are a different story, but we'll come back to that another day).

Can we be friends? Maybe without Katie bitching about it?