Friday, June 1, 2012

Free Friday - Soup!

I'm going to be sliding into home with this one today!  Welcome to June today!  Just barely made it to the computer to type all this up.  I've been obsessed with beds and bread today.  Baked two batches of bread... I'm sure you'll get to see that one soon enough!  Also, went and got the kids a new set of bunks.  We were one bed short for everyone to have their own, so I fixed that today.   Now, I just need the kids bedroom flooring to be installed, and I'll be cooking with gas!  Actually, that won't change at all how I cook, sadly, because if new floors equaled gas stove, I'd have done that long ago.   As it is, I'm impaired with an electric.  There was some discussion to switch the kitchen to gas, but the long and the short was it's expensive to convert like that plus it's not exactly going to add value to the house, especially in this economy.  Most people like the convenience of electric, unless they are serious chefs and understand the importance of gas, and that's still a fairly small market.

Onto Friday!  Busy day!  The kitchen is finally quiet after a day of bustle, the bed is stacked in boxes in the living room and my vacuum never showed.   My seller was very quick to get it out to the shipping company, but those people really took their time.  I realize the holiday weekend was last week and that probably slowed down, and subsequently, backed up shipping, but seriously, it shouldn't take 2 weeks coming from Arizona.   Look out if the box is damaged, oy vey.  However, today's idea was the fact that I've been filling my freezer with soups.  I love soups, easy to eat and fairly easy to make, today's soup is Bok Choy Shiitake mushroom.  I DID get this recipe from another website!  It's certainly no brainchild of mine, though I was considering taking on a challenge with leeks...

So, I can't say that there are a whole lot of recipes out there that I haven't seriously modifed - rejoice! today's our day, I changed almost nothing in this recipe!  Shocked?  Me too.  It's ridiculously rare for me to find a recipe and not turn it into a three ring circus, or at least some semblance of a messy kitchen.  I did change up some things though.  First, I made it gluten free (DO NOT follow her recipe exactly if you are wheat/gluten free!!!!  Please be aware!  Soy sauce has wheat in it.)  Secondly I had to substitute an ingredient I didn't have and add one I loved, and thirdly, I changed one of the steps.  There is a really neat secret to getting some good flavor into your soup.  I used an idea from a friend and soaked the mushrooms in some of the broth before cooking them - it greatly reduces the oil they absorb while cooking.  They pick up the flavor and then it basically cooks down when they are sautéeing in the pan.

Here we go!

This is the original recipe:

Bok Choy Shiitake Soup

About 1 medium/large head of bok choy - chopped
2 cups sliced shiitake mushrooms
1 cup chopped onion
(3 ounces of grated ginger if you like)
2 tsp coconut oil
2 tBsp tamari sauce (you can find this in low sodium versions - I have some in my fridge right now!)
1 tsp dried red pepper flakes (OR szechuan pepper - which I did not have)
1 Quart low sodium chicken stock
salt/ pepper to taste
chopped chives to garnish

Start with a large sauce pan (6-8 quarts) with about 1/3 of the broth in it and the mushrooms.  Gradually raise the temperature to 'HOT'.  HAHA!  What a description!  Basically, you're not cooking the mushrooms, you want them to soak up the broth and they're ready to be taken out when they are too hot to touch, but NOT cooked!  Use a slotted spoon to get the mushrooms out, leave the broth in the pan, keep it at a simmer but be careful to not boil it all off.

While the sauce pan heats, place the oil and onion in the frying pan and cook till they are translucent.  Add the bok choy, mushrooms, ginger, tamari sauce and pepper flakes and cook about 10 minutes, or until the mushrooms are cooked.

Take all the ingredients from the frying pan and using a spatula, scrape every tiny bit of it into the saucepan.  Pour the rest of the broth in as well.  Heat to simmer and it's piping hot, ready to serve!

No, my pictures are nowhere near as amazing as hers.  I don't have my camera yet.  I am using a Samsung Galaxy S 5.0 mp3 player for a camera.  Takes pretty good pics for an mp3 player.  =)

Welcome to a great weekend!  Hope yours is filled with delicious eats and lots of relaxation!


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Did you enjoy one of the recipes or just killing time at work on a Friday? Let everyone know! Also, if you modified a recipe with great success - post it! We love new ideas and delicious foods! Keep it clean and family friendly!