Creamy Ham and Potato Soup

Creamy Ham and Potato Soup

If you have been following my blog for a while, then you know that I am in a predicament, a Food predicament~ A Potato Predicament!! If this is the first time you are visiting my blog, then welcome to the wacky world of the Moore’s!! Hubs loves buying everything in bulk quantity…Is it an Irish thing?? In this case, yes it is. He purchased Fifty pounds of potatoes, much to my shagrin. But never the less, we are eating a lot of potato pancakes, stews, and my newest Creamy Ham and Potato Soup. You will love this soup because it is easy and so delicious. It is on the top ten of our favorite soups now.

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients

3 1/2 cups peeled and diced potatoes
1/3 cup diced celery
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup carrot, diced (optional)
1 cup diced cooked ham (buy a ham steak in the deli section)
3 1/4 cups chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon ground white or black pepper, or to taste
5 tablespoons butter
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk

Instructions

Combine the potatoes, celery, onion, carrot, ham and chicken broth in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the salt and pepper.
In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour with a fork, and cook, stirring constantly until thick, about 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk so that lumps don’t form and until all of the milk has been added. Continue stirring over medium-low heat until thick, 4 to 5 minutes.
Stir the milk mixture into the stockpot, and cook soup until heated through.
Top with cheddar cheese, chives, and bacon if desired. Serve immediately.

Source: adapted from The Girl Who Ate Everything

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Lemon Garlic Shrimp Pasta

Lemon Garlic Shrimp Pasta

Hubs loves buying food in rather large quantities, remember the 50 pounds of potatoes??? He will never hear the end of that one! Keeps me on my toes coming up with new and delicious recipes. So when he brought home six pounds of Maine shrimp I really was excited to make a shrimp pasta dish. I had to use a lot of garlic and a lot of butter, how could it be bad?? Also, love sopping up the lemon butter sauce with garlic bread, it’s a weakness of the good kind!!

Ingredients:
1 pound Sweet Maine Shrimp (shelled and cleaned) you can use any shrimp
3 cloves of garlic, minced
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
1 Lemon, juiced
1 pound pasta, I prefer spaghetti or ruffles with this sauce ( cooked al dente)

Method:

In a saute pan over medium heat, melt butter, add olive oil, add garlic, saute until golden brown, about 3 minutes, add Italian Seasoning, add shrimp and any juices, cook for about 3-4 minutes on each side making sure that you don’t overcook the shrimp, it will get rubbery, when the shrimp curls, that is a good indication that it is done. Add lemon juice before serving over pasta.

Note~ this is delicious the day after too, add a little more olive oil if pasta is dry. Perfect with my garlic bread and a tossed salad!

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Chocolate Ganache Tart

Chocolate Ganache Tart

After traveling for over 24 hours visiting all of our grand children and big kids, I always feel like I need a couple days to re cooperate. With laundry piling up to no foreseen end, I just want to push it all aside and bake. I finally ordered a tart pan with a removable bottom, why has it taken me so long? I always thought that you had to be a professional chef to use a tart pan, I was so impressed by how beautiful fresh fruit tarts looked and always bought one for a party, but those days have ended. I have lots of ideas in mind for this tart pan!!

Sundays with Joy chose this fabulous and very decadent Chocolate Tart. I am thankful for this baking group that I am so proud to be a part of, I have learned so much from my fellow accomplished bakers. I would probably not have chosen to make a tart because for the obvious reason, I didn’t own a tart pan and just looking at the picture of the tart looked way too difficult, I am all for the very simple recipes with ingredients that I usually have on hand, but today I have expanded my horizons and guess what?? My family said it was the best thing I have ever baked! Well the only thing that you bake is the crust…but still, I bake almost every day so this is a huge compliment…

The Chocolate Ganache in the recipe calls for Dark Chocolate, but since all of the dark chocolate that I have in my pantry has some sort of nut mixed in, I used Ghiradelli Bittersweet Chocolate, it is perfect with the raspberries and fresh cream. I used Trader Joe’s Whipping Cream, a new product that they carry, does not need to be refrigerated, I love this, you never know when you need whipping cream…always!! Oh, and I love this crust…yes I have a weird phobia about crusts, but this one is a press in the pan crust, pop it in the freezer before baking, Voila, easy peasy! So go ahead and get yourself a Joy The Baker Cookbook from amazon.com or Barnes and Noble, if you haven’t already. You will want to try this fabulous dessert to impress all of your friends, I know mine were really impressed!

 

Ingredients

For the crust
    • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
    • Pinch of ground ginger
    • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold
    • 1 large egg yolk, beaten
For the ganache
    • 8 oz dark chocolate, finely chopped
    • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
    • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temp, cut in half
For the topping
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 tbs powdered sugar
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries

Instructions

To make the crust
    1. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt and spices. Cut in butter with fingers until well incorporated. Some butter chunks will be the size of small pebbles, others will resemble oatmeal flakes. Once incorporated, add the egg yolk and bring mixture together with a fork. Dump mixture into a 9 inch tart pan (or 9 inch spring form pan) and press the crust into the sides and bottom with your fingers. Place in freezer for about an hour.
To make ganache
    1. Place chopped up chocolate in a medium sized bowl. In a small saucepan over medium low heat to a very low simmer. Pour half of cream on top of chocolate and let stand for about a minute, then whisk together. Add in the rest of the milk and butter. Stir until butter is melted. Place in the fridge and stir every 10 minutes until it sets up a little bit.
    2. Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 350ºF. Butter a piece of foil and place butter side down on top of chilled tart. Bake for 20 minutes, then take foil off and bake for another 15, or until golden brown.
    3. Allow tart to cool completely before filling with ganache.
To make topping
  1. In a medium bowl, whip together heavy cream and sugar until soft peaks form. Spread chocolate ganache in tart, then top with whipped cream and berries. Serve immediately. (Can stay in fridge for 3 days)

Notes

Recipe seen in Joy The Baker’s cookbook

Nettie <3