Saturday, January 8, 2011

New Year's Day

The tradition of having my family over for soup on New Year's Day is still going strong, but thankfully, my mother has not continued her tradition of getting a speeding ticket in Moscow Mills, as she did the first New Year's she came out here for soup. This year, I made 5 soups, which we all decided was OVERKILL! However, 4 of them were delicious, and while I liked the other one pretty well, my grandma kept telling me how it was not her favorite, so I think I stopped liking it because of her influence. I also made 3 breads and two desserts. No pictures, because I am lazy, but delicious recipes...

Crab and Havarti Bisque with Dill
3 tablespoons butter
3 whole cloves garlic, peeled
1 large Spanish onion, peeled and diced
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 ribs of celery, diced
3 yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1 inch cubes
4 tablespoons tomato paste
8 cups of lobster stock (if, like me, you cannot find this... I think vegetable broth is the best alternative)
1 cup sherry
1 pound crab meat
8 slices, or 1/2 pound, Havarti cheese
3 teaspoons dry mustard
2 cups heavy cream
6 dashes Worcestershire sauce
6 dashes Tabasco sauce
3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
Salt and Pepper to taste

Melt the butter in a stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, onion, carrots, celery, and potatoes. Saute, stirring frequently for 10 minutes.

Add the tomato paste, stock, and sherry. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium, cover the pot, and simmer for 35-40 more minutes.

Remove from heat. Add the cheese and mustard. Let the cheese melt into the soup. Puree soup in the pot using a hand blender or working in batches with a regular blender until smooth. Return soup to stove. Add the crab, cream, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, dill, salt and pepper, and stir thoroughly.

Makes 10-12 servings.

Country Split Pea Soup with Bacon
3 tablespoons butter
1 large Spanish onion, peeled and diced
2 ribs celery, sliced
8 large carrots, peeled and sliced
3 whole cloves garlic, peeled
1 pound dried green split peas
10 cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons dry sherry
5 dashes Tabasco sauce
12 slices bacon, cooked until crisp
Salt and Pepper to taste

Melt the butter in a 6-8 quart pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery, carrots, and garlic. Saute for 7-10 minutes, stirring frequently.

Add the split peas and chicken stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium. Simmer for 1 hour, or until the split peas are soft and tender.

Remove from the stove. Add the sherry and Tabasco sauce. Puree the soup in the pot using a hand blender or working in batches with a regular blender until smooth. Add the bacon. Stir to combine thoroughly.

Both of these were DE-licious. I also made Beef Stew, (the recipe is already catalogued on this cite) Mushroom Soup, which I am not going to type out because it isn't as good as the others, and Potato Soup, which I can only explain how to make, but have never written down a recipe.

As far as bread, I made Parmesan garlic bread out of an Italian loaf, Corn Bread (the recipe is also already catalogued on this cite) and Beer bread.

Beer Bread
1 (12 fluid ounce can or bottle) beer
3 cups self-rising flour
3 tablespoons sugar

In a large bowl, mix together the sugar and flour. Add beer and continue to mix. Batter will be sticky. Pour into a 9 x 5 inch greased loaf pan.

Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees ) for 50 for 60 minutes. The top will be crunchy, but the insides will be soft. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pan.

For dessert, I made carrot cake and apple pie. The apple pie is already catalogued on this cite, but here's the carrot cake recipe. (It is divine!)

Carrot Cake

4 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup apple sauce
1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple
3/4 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
3 cups grated carrots

1 cup pecans and 1 cup raisins (optional)

1/2 cup butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3-4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan or 3 eight inch round pans.

In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, apple sauce, pineapple, white and brown sugar and 3 teaspoons vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir in carrots. Fold in pecans and raisins, if you are adding them. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes for 9 x 13 inch pan or 25 minutes for 8 inch round pans, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.

In a medium bowl, combine butter, cream cheese and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Gradually add sugar, and beat until the mixture is smooth and creamy and of the desired sweetness and consistency.
Frost the cooled cake. For a 9x13 inch cake, spread frosting on top. For 8 inch round cakes, place one layer of the cake on a cake platter or plate. Spread 1/3 of the icing on top of the layer. Place a second layer on top of the first iced layer. Spread 1/3 of the icing on top of this layer. Place the final layer on top. Spread the remaining 1/3 of the icing on top of the final layer. Refrigerate any leftovers.

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