As you may or may not know...
I am a cabbage roll junkie... But sometimes I just don't want to spend an hour trying to get the cabbage leaves peeled without tearing them and it is this huge, long winded process that I thought I wanted to cut down. It was also in the middle of the summer that I decided to go balls to the wall and make soup. Foolhardy? Absolutely. Worth it? Absolutely. I was really craving golabki, I eat the stuff nearly all year round if I can get away with it... but didn't want to wrap stuff or peel the leaves as I said, and this really is the faster way to get these flavors.
I don't have some fantastic story about how this came to be. I know it isn't an original idea, I did see something similar on YouTube by a woman named Noreen, but that was some years ago. I wanted to come up with my own idea and even maybe a little bit of goulash flavorage or stuffed pepper to add to the dish.
So there are a few things, one of which doesn't need to be pointed out at all but I am going to own up to it anyways... It doesn't look perfect. There, I said it. But looks can certainly be deceiving, right? The fact of the matter is, I did not want to change the integrity of the meat. In the original dish, the meat is placed in the cabbage raw and cooked inside... searing off the meatballs would have completely changed the flavor profile, and I have seen it done the same way for Italian Wedding Soup where the meatballs were not seared. Now, this doesn't mean to say it would make it disgusting, it just wouldn't be the correct flavor profile. If you want to sear your meatballs for presentation, by all means, I am just saying that this way is closer to the original flavor.
Second thing is that regardless of whether you make them as rolls or soup, this dish tends to get greasy from the fat that comes off of the meat. This is one soup where i don't mind it so much, but if you want to get rid of the fat, let it cool completely and then skim it off when it is solid, but leave some for flavor. Or you can boil your meatballs in water and reduce the amount of fat, but again, it would change the flavor profile.
I promise you that this will make you very happy if you are a cabbage roll fanatic like myself. The flavors are rich and hearty, and your belly will be nice and padded by the time you eat what you've served to yourself.
Prep time shouldn't take more than 30 minutes tops between the chopping and the making of the meatballs, cook time is about an hour but is more of a set and forget type of thing (You really only have to get up three times to stir). It serves at least 10 people
This was just a quick one!
I know this was just a quick blog post, but I wanted to get something up so you all didn't think I forgot any of you. My husband just had his surgery not too long ago and I am finding it a struggle to cook for one person since I am a nurturer and like to make people happy with food. Things will even out eventually.
Until then, my friends, I just hope you enjoy the recipes I am able to bring. I have a few that I need to redo from my old blog and such, plus three or four more things already made that I completely forgot about. You'll see :)
Until then... Happy eating, happy belly, my foodies.
It's already cold in the mitten state.
It has been cold for the last several weeks and it is shifting into the time where making soup and stew is a weekly ritual. I happen to like a lot of different soups, but had been craving something I hadn't had in at least seven or eight years. Broccoli cheese soup is my absolute favorite soup for a few reasons...
One, I love broccoli, and I love cheese.
Two, It fills me up for a while.
And three, it makes me warm when it's cold.
I never really used somebody else's recipe because I thought it would be easy... I was right, but still, I should have looked at a recipe or two for some idea of ingredients besides the broccoli and cheese. To add cream or not to add cream? What cheese works best? Do I have to blend it? So many questions that I had in my head.
I wish I had some kind of awesome story to tack on with this recipe, but I don't. This wasn't something from my childhood, just something I sampled from a certain bread restaurant that we all know, and I found it way too salty so I made my own. Simple as that. What else is there?
So instead of a story about soup, I am going off on another tangent for a minute because I feel like the ending can be compared.
Right now, life is rough. You already know that I miss my dad and that I cannot say enough about that, but other things are happening too. Being an adult can suck sometimes, and right now, that is how I feel. I mean, we all get hit with it from time to time, and sometimes even all at once. For me, it's that every time that Bruce and I have something fixed, another thing is broken. Every. Single. Time. For instance, I swallowed my pride to talk to my mom about my car. I didn't exactly ask for money because I don't feel right to, but I did gripe about it. She gave us the money, and we got all the big things fixed that needed fixing; the muffler, the suspension, and some other important things that make the car safe to drive. We get that fixed and it's running great! I mean, there is still a little work left on the muffler, but it's so much better and we can actually hear ourselves think when we're on the highway, and relax instead of having our hearts in our throats in the hopes of not being pulled over for noise violation and get slapped with a ticket. All of that is great, right? Hallelujah! (FOREVER GRATEFUL!!!)
But then, bad news comes. "Hey, my uncle is in a coma, we need to come to the hospital." -- That was the day before my birthday that we went. "Hey, let's take you out to eat." Can't enjoy my food, dad isn't around to call and wish me a happy birthday, Bruce's uncle is on HIS way out and reminding me of Daddy, and then all kinds of little things: the water pressure being out of whack, not getting a hot shower and only getting cold bird baths from the sink... Stuff clogging, stuff breaking... People asking for money you don't have and you feel like a terrible person for letting them down. You start to wonder why on earth it's all happening at once and just want to yell at the air for being polluted.
And then you get a reminder of little things that don't suck. Being hugged by your spouse and cuddling up while asleep because the weather is cold, wrapping up in an afghan your late grandmother knitted because it's like being hugged, and eating a bowl of soup because it is also like a hug.
That is why I wanted to make soup. So I did...
Life is not all peaches and cream, but you can still dream of the cobbler they can make.
This is not diet food... But it is healthier than it could be.
I want to preface this recipe with a few things... First, I wanted to make it gluten free and not use a roux as a thickening agent. Two, I wanted it to be a little easier... Three, I wanted it to still be creamy, but I didn't want to add heavy cream. Little changes!
Putting it together...
Okay, potatoes? Yogurt?
Yes... You read the text right!
First, the taters... The taters replaces the starch that the flour in the roux would have given you, which helps the cheese to bind into the soup. I tested this out because I would like to pass it on to those who are on a gluten free diet can enjoy it too. (See, I DO love you. :P)
The greek yogurt is because I put sour cream instead of heavy cream, and I wanted that tangy flavor. The creaminess of the yogurt makes it more decadent.
I loved it with the changes!
I can honestly tell you that it still filled me up, that it tasted great, and that I couldn't even tell there were potatoes in there. The only reason I cannot call it diet food is for the fact that cheese is pretty fatty. But you CAN cut down on some of the fat so you can feel LESS guilty, and still feel like you did nothing out of the ordinary to your soup.
I normally don't use turmeric in my broccoli cheese soup, and that also helps because it enhances the flavor of the broccoli in all the right ways.
Some updates and other Stuff!
And that's all she wrote.
The Eccentric Foodie
Cooking bacon in the oven is the easiest way.
These are various recipes that either I created, or I found and adjusted to what I thought would be awesome or even healthier.