Wednesday, January 1, 2014

New Year * New Soup

This was the start of my Holiday baking day.  I made (5 batches) "Saltine Cracker Toffee" oft referred to in my house simply as 'crack'.  This stuff is the bomb!@#@!  There is no way not to eat it and eat some more and go back for just a little more.

Fast forward to December 29th.  Christmas is over and the crack, rugelach, gingerbread, chocolate covered pretzels and TJ's dark chocolate covered shortbread stars are all devoured.   I decide to clean the fridge - not just old food and flat soda bottles but actually taking out the shelves and washing them as instructed with warm soapy water in the sink.  Hand drying and carefully putting them back in place.

Actually, I did not decide to clean the fridge - this is the sort of task for me that just happens.  I was reaching in for some milk for my coffee and I noticed the produce drawer had some droopy celery and decided to toss it.  After I toss it, I notice it was wilted pretty badly - it may have still been in there from Thanksgiving (ewe!) and thus there is a black slimy scum in the drawer - yuk!  I take everything out of the produce drawer and wash out the drawer in the sink.  I put the drawer back and two apples and one lemon that are still in good shape.  I toss three old hard limes and some spinach that is close to wilting and might undo my handiwork if I put it back in. I am ready for my coffee now but I notice the rest of the fridge looks pretty awful compared the the sparkling produce drawer and so it begins...

During this dreaded task I came upon a piece of 'crack' that had fallen off it's shelf and dropped all the way down behind the last shelf at the bottom of the fridge - and I'm not gonna lie to you - I ate it!  I thought it was totally gross at the time but it was gone for the season and I was not making more and there it was - so I ate it.  Yup, I ate it!

Now it is 2014!!! I am up two lbs from two weeks ago so here we go…a nice healthy and flavorful Hot and Sour Soup I make with turkey broth to begin my cleanse!

I have the recipe clipped from the Oregonian Foodday, but the exact recipe is also on an internet blog called "theKitchn" and she claims to have made up the recipe from leftovers in her fridge.  If you did not have a turkey for Christmas or for some strange reason you didn't make stock from your turkey bones you can make this with chicken stock or veggie stock purchased in the store.
Hot and Sour Mushroom, Cabbage, and Rice Soup
Makes eight to ten 1-cup servings
1 tablespoon canola oil
4 ounces cremini or shiitake mushroom caps, thinly sliced
1 to 3 jalapeno peppers, finely diced
6 cloves garlic, minced
One 3-inch lump ginger, grated (or 1 tablespoon ginger puree)
1 to 3 limes, zested and juiced
8 cups broth — turkey, chicken, or vegetable
1/2 cup jasmine rice
2 tablespoons soy sauce, plus more to serve
1/2 small head green cabbage, cut in half and shaved thin
Chili garlic sauce or kimchi, to serve
Heat the oil in a large heavy pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes without stirring. Toss the mushrooms after 5 minutes and cook for an additional 5 minutes, or until well-browned. Add the diced peppers, garlic, and ginger and cook for about five minutes or until fragrant and slightly softened.
Add the lime zest and broth and bring to a simmer. Add the rice, cover, and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the rice is just barely soft. Add the shaved cabbage, lime juice, and soy sauce to taste and simmer for another few minutes or until cabbage is hot.
Serve with extra soy sauce, lime wedges, and kimchi or chili garlic sauce.

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