Some good Thai soup

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Something this colorful has to taste good

I made this soup for dinner last night, and now posting while I still remember the ingredients!

I like to use prepackaged soups as a starter vehicle for a heartier, more flavorful stew. It takes some of the prep time out of my cooking, makes the idea of prepackaged more appealing (I almost never eat soup as-is, I always gotta “church it up”), and we end up with a kinds of unique concoctions. Most of the time I’m unable to duplicate a recipe, but since I’m writing this one down there’s a 1,000,000% better chance for recreating it!

Here’s what went into my Thai soup:
Started with this base soup from Happy Planet, this a two serving package, another reason to add to it, I like my soup to be enough for 8 servings – or two whole meals (see pic below)
Added 6 small carrots
Half a diced red onion
Half a chopped red pepper
Two stalks celery
Bok choy
1/4 of a chopped red cabbage
1/2 can Organic Coconut milk
Chicken broth
1lb shrimp
Lime juice, cilantro, fresh ginger, and garlic to taste
A big tablespoon full of this leftover lemongrass / basil marinade I had sitting in the fridge waiting me to use it all up…
(Where I don’t list quantities, it’s to whatever soupiness or quantity of vegetable you desire)

Served over jasmine rice, and everyone ate it all up which is a success in our house. Would also be yummy with thin rice noodles.
I think broccoli would be a good addition if you didn’t have cabbage or bok choy. When I make soups I prefer them chunky with a hearty base, so I puréed only half of the first four ingredients after they cooked for a bit, (with some chicken broth) then added it all back into the pot.

Happy cooking!

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Baking with love

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I go through cycles of loving/loathing cooking. I’ve been cooking and baking gluten free since August 2013. (Going off gluten made a huge difference in my energy and overall well being). Hoping that with a blog I can better categorize my recipes, especially when I make changes or add things, or make something from scratch because I think the ingredients will be good together then can’t remember that thing I made that tasted so good when I’m out of ideas or in a loathe cycle.
Enter today’s challenge. My husband and mother-in-law celebrate birthdays three days apart, March 3rd, and 6th. We’ll head up to Thornton tonight to celebrate with dinner and just being together. My MIL asked me to bring dessert since I’m the one with dietary restrictions. (Thankfully my family goes along with my needs, I guess they have to since I’m the one cooking). Leave it to my husband to request angel food cake. Now, I’ve (mostly) successfully baked plenty of dense breads and cakes with my own blend of gluten free flour. But like stated, those were dense breads, easily accommodated to the denser properties of gluten free flour. Angel food cake is the complete opposite of dense, one can’t easily hide mistakes. I’ve made angel food cake from scratch with regular wheat flour, failed miserably, then went to the store to get the box kind. I was feeling a little intimidated.
Well, a key for my gluten free baking is to scour the internet and Pinterest for well-tested methods, then to make sure the person posting the recipe isn’t some highly acclaimed or trained chef, and finally to read all of the comments for any tweaks. Basically, does the recipe translate to my normal kitchen without any high tech gadgets or hard to get ingredients?
This recipe seems to fit the bill. And now I’ve reached that point in the post where you let the pictures do the rest of the talking:

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Forming stiff peaks (then being patient enough to gently fold in the flour and sugar blend)

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Fresh out of the oven, meaning it still had the potential to collapse

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Success! Baked with love. Happy birthday Grandma B and Zach! Can’t wait to celebrate tonight!