A Gift for the Season — Day 1

soup
Image from tasteofhome.com

 

This yummy recipe for vegetable soup is sure to cure whatever ails you from the common cold to a lousy mood. Simple, flexible, and easy. From my cookbook, Recipes of Trailside Cafe & Tea Room.

Vegetable Soup

1 large onion, chopped small (1 ½ cups)

4 ribs celery including leaves if possible, chopped small (1 ½ cups)

2-3 carrots, chopped small (1 ½ cups)

3 cloves garlic, minced

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 15-ounce can petite dice tomatoes

1 ½ teaspoons sugar

1 ½ quarts water

2 baby yellow squash (or 1 medium size), bad skin areas and seeds removed, ½ inch dice

½ tablespoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

2 large potatoes, ½ inch dice

❧ Heat large soup pan, add oil, sauté onion, celery, and carrot over high heat until they start to soften (about 10 minutes).

❧ Add garlic, stir briefly, add tomatoes. Stir to heat through.

❧ Add squash, water, sugar, salt, pepper.

❧ Heat to boil, cover, reduce heat to gentle simmer for about 1 hour.

❧ Add potato, cover, increase heat until bubbling, immediately reduce to very low heat so mixture barely simmers. Cover and cook until potatoes are tender, about 30 minutes. Too long or too hot cook time will cause potatoes to break down and broth will be milky.

❧ Taste for seasoning, add salt if needed.

Options: Use leftover cooked vegetables such as lima beans, English peas, green beans, or corn in addition to or instead of the squash.

Pineapple Candy

pineapple-fudge-packetMouthwatering treat for your candy jar!

3 cups brown sugar, packed

1 8-ounce can crushed pineapple

2 cups English walnuts, coarsely chopped

❧ Stir sugar and pineapple together in medium saucepan over medium high heat.

❧ Cook to the firm end of soft ball stage, 240° on candy thermometer.

❧ Cool pan in water bath, beating while it cools.

❧ When mixture has mostly cooled, add walnuts and continue beating until it starts to thicken, then quickly spread into buttered 8x8x2 pan.

❧ Let set until fully cooled, then cut into 1-inch squares.