Sunday #Soup #Cooking up Memories


Do you love homemade soup?

 

Maybe it’s because I owned a restaurant for thirteen years and as chief cook and bottle washer, made a LOT of soup, but I’m very fussy when we go out to eat. It amazes me how so many cooks can’t create a decent soup!

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

I’m trained in the house of mom 🙂

She took pity on me and taught me the rudimentary necessities needed to make a delicious base that will work for 99% of the soups you cook.

The secret?

Onions, carrots, celery. Yep, it’s that easy.

 

Today, I’m going to share my recipe for Cream of Potato Soup. 

Start with a good-sized pot, either a dutch oven or slow cooker if you prefer.

Add:

1 large onion chopped fine

3 med carrots chopped

3 med celery chopped

1 tbsp margarine or olive oil if preferred

Salt and pepper

Simmer together on med-low heat until onions are translucent

 

Ingredients:

5 pounds potatoes- russet

1 litre milk

2-3 tbsp chicken soup base

Salt and pepper

1 1/2 cups flour

shredded cheese (if preferred)

Meanwhile, peel and chop into bite-size chunks 5 pounds of russet potatoes and rinse in pan of cool water. Drain.

Add potatoes to pot, then fill to 1-1 1/2 inches above potatoes with water. Set pot to boil, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Simmer for approx. half an hour or until potatoes are cooked.

In a separate bowl, add 3 cups cold water and salt and pepper. Slowly mix in the flour stirring with a wisk to blend.

Add chicken powder base and milk to soup. Stir and return to slow boil before adding the flour water until soup begins to thicken. Simmer ten minutes more for flavors to bind.

Serve with a little shredded cheese on top.

 

The best thing about this soup is how easy you can change it up.

Add a can of clams for clam chowder

Frozen seafood medley for seafood chowder

Frozen fancy vegetable mix for Cream of vegetable soup

Cooked, chopped bacon for bacon and potato soup.

2 Cans creamed corn for corn chowder

The choices are only limited by your imagination 🙂

Enjoy!

 

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Stranded on a planet that lacks food, Vela makes the ultimate sacrifice… Star-Crossed by @PintipDunn #Fantasy #YA @ExpressoBookTours


Star-Crossed
Pintip Dunn
Publication date: October 2nd 2018
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult

Princess Vela’s people are starving.

Stranded on a planet that lacks food, Vela makes the ultimate sacrifice and becomes an Aegis for her people. Accepting a genetic modification that takes sixty years off her life, she can feed her colony via nutrition pills. But her best friend is still getting worse. And she’s not the only one.

Now the king is dying, too.

When the boy she’s had a crush on since childhood volunteers to give his life for her father’s, Vela realizes her people need more than pills to survive. As tensions rise between Aegis and colonists, secrets and sabotage begin to threaten the future of the colony itself.

Unless Vela is brave enough to save them all…

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EXCERPT:

I break off a piece of raspberry tart, with a crust as light as sunshine, and slide it into the pocket of my caftan. My mouth goes dry in spite of the sweet tang that’s about to burst over my tongue.

Because the hidden bite’s not for me. It’s for my best friend, Astana, and if the royal guards catch me stealing food for a colonist, I could be thrown into the Red Cell Prison. Our laws are clear: actual food, as opposed to nutrition pills, must be reserved for those who can utilize it best.

I shove the rest of the tart into my mouth. It breaks upon contact, littering crumbs across the silver shuttle floor. I’m so nervous the dessert tastes like congealed space dust and raspberries, but I chew and swallow as if nothing’s wrong. As if there isn’t a smooshed-up pie staining the inside of my pocket.

Did anyone see me hide the bite?

All around the Banquet Room, the Aegis dig into their mid-afternoon snack. Pecan-encrusted squash, double-mashed garlic potatoes, barbecued tofu drizzled with a blackberry-port reduction. They sit twenty per table, at sheets of metal which would sag if they weren’t doubly reinforced. Their silverware clinks together in a high, tinny melody, replacing the conversation that might have occurred back on Earth, where eating was partly social instead of wholly functional.

On our new planet, Dion, no Aegis talks during the first twenty minutes of a meal. It would be a waste, since more food can be consumed before the stomach has a chance to feel full. And an Aegis has only one goal: to consume as many nutrients as possible. We have to, in order to take in enough sustenance for the rest of the colony.

I’m about to finish what’s left of the tart when a hand closes over my elbow.

My heart stutters. So it comes to this. After training all my life to eat for my people, I’m caught over a piece of raspberry pie.

Pellets of sweat break out on my neck. I turn to my captor, the excuses ready on my lips. It’s just a single bite. My best friend’s been so down lately. I just want to bring her a little excitement, a little joy. Is that so wrong?

The words melt in my mouth. Because it’s not a royal guard who has a hold of me. It’s my older sister.

“Sweet before savory?” Blanca asks, moving the hand from my elbow and onto her hip. “Is that your secret, Vela? You eat a round of dessert before the main course?”

Of course not. I’m only eating this tart because it gives me an excuse to be near the dessert buffet. But Blanca doesn’t have to know that.

“You got me,” I say. “Sweet and savory foods fill different mental compartments, you know. You can still eat chocolate cake, even though you’re full of ramen noodles and pan-fried dumplings—”

“Save it.” Blanca arches her back, jutting out her food baby. Fifteen minutes from now, after she pays a visit to the Transfer Room, her stomach will deflate once again, but my sister’s always been one to show off her roundness, however temporary. “I don’t need your strategies to be named Top Aegis.”

I’m a shoo-in for the top prize this year. Blanca knows it, I know it. Half of our Eating class has placed bets on it. If I keep eating the way I have for the next two days, no one will even come close.

Vela Kunchai, Top Aegis. I can taste it. Hot and satisfying, like a tray of lasagna with a bubbling soy cheese crust. I’d stretch my stomach lining into gauze to make sure it’s me. My sister, unfortunately, feels the same way.


Author Bio:

Pintip Dunn is a New York Times bestselling author of young adult fiction. She graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with an A.B., and received her J.D. at Yale Law School.

Her novel FORGET TOMORROW won the 2016 RWA RITA® for Best First Book, and SEIZE TODAY won the 2018 RITA for Best Young Adult Romance. Her books have been translated into four languages, and they have been nominated for the following awards: the Grand Prix del’Imaginaire; the Japanese Sakura Medal; the MASL Truman Award; the TomeSociety It list; and the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award.

Her other titles include REMEMBER YESTERDAY, THE DARKEST LIE, GIRL ON THE VERGE, STAR-CROSSED, and MALICE.

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Sir Chocolate and the Sugar Crystal Caves Story and Cookbook #BookReview #Childrensread #mgtab @bakeandwrite


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Sir Chocolate and Lady Sweet get sugar water from the Sugar Crystal Caves to make delicious goodies for their shop. Unfortunately something is making the crystals melt. What can Sir Chocolate do? Includes four lovely new recipes.

 

 

 

 

 

Robbie

Robbie Cheadle was born in London in the United Kingdom. Her father died when she was three months old and her mother immigrated to South Africa with her tiny baby girl. Robbie has lived in Johannesburg, George and Cape Town in South Africa and attended fourteen different schools. This gave her lots of opportunities to meet new people and learn lots of social skills as she was frequently “the new girl”.

Robbie is a qualified Chartered Accountant and specialises in corporate finance with a specific interest in listed entities and stock markets. Robbie has written a number of publications on listing equities and debt instruments in Africa and foreign direct investment into Africa.

Robbie is married to Terence Cheadle and they have two lovely boys, Gregory and Michael. Michael (aged 11) is the co-author of the Sir Chocolate series of books and attends school in Johannesburg. Gregory (aged 14) is an avid reader and assists Robbie and Michael with filming and editing their YouTube videos and editing their books.

 

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Photo by Life Of Pix on Pexels.com

 

My Review

This book is a culinary delight!

Sir Chocolate and Lady Sweet use water from the Sugar Crystal Caves to make delicious treats, but this trip they encounter something very worrisome- the crystals are melting!

In order to save their precious cave they must help a dragon in need of a friend.

This story was sweet (pun intended :)) and teaches us all the value of kindness. The pictures are a fantastic accompaniment to the creative prose, and there is a bonus of some family-friendly recipes at the end.

I give Sir Chocolate and the Sugar Caves Story and Cookbook 5 well-deserved kisses!

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A killer’s on the loose in…Too Many Women in The Room by @JoanneGuidoccio #BookReview #CozyMystery #SummerReads


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When Gilda Greco invites her closest friends to a VIP dinner, she plans to share David Korba’s signature dishes and launch their joint venture—Xenia, an innovative Greek restaurant near Sudbury, Ontario.

Unknown to Gilda, David has also invited Michael Taylor, a lecherous photographer who has throughout the past three decades managed to annoy all the women in the room. One woman follows Michael to a deserted field for his midnight run and stabs him in the jugular.

Gilda’s life is awash with complications as she wrestles with a certain detective’s commitment issues and growing doubts about her risky investment in Xenia. Frustrated, Gilda launches her own investigation and uncovers decades-old secrets and resentments that have festered until they explode into untimely death. Can Gilda outwit a killer bent on killing again?

 

 

 

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In 2008, Joanne took advantage of early retirement and decided to launch a second career that would tap into her creative side and utilize her well-honed organizational skills. Slowly, a writing practice emerged. Her articles and book reviews were published in newspapers, magazines, and online. When she tried her hand at fiction, she made reinvention a recurring theme in her novels and short stories. A member of Crime Writers of Canada, Sisters in Crime, and Romance Writers of America, Joanne writes paranormal romance, cozy mysteries, and inspirational literature from her home base of Guelph, Ontario.

 

My Review

This story is a decadent delight!

Filled with delicious cuisine, complex characters, and a murder mystery, this story will leave you guessing until the very end!

Lottery winner, Gilda Greco, secretly invests in a Greek restaurant owned by friends David and Susan Korba. A pre-opening celebration where she plans to announce the big news turns sour when womanizing Michael Taylor shows up to dinner. Anger and resentment stew, ruining Gilda’s big night.

The next morning Michael turns up dead, but who did it? Everyone is a suspect. Gilda’s worry for her friends and her investment in Xenia drive her to launch her own investigation with the help of her sometimes love interest, Detective Carlo Fantin.

Will they solve the crime before someone else dies?

I give Too Many Women in The Room 5 lovely kisses

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The bonds of history run deep… The Apple Orchard by @SusanWiggs #WomensFiction #FamilySaga #BookReview


#1 New York Times bestselling author Susan Wiggs brings readers into the lush abundance of Sonoma County, in a story of sisters, friendship and the invisible bonds of history that are woven like a spell around us.

 

 

Tess Delaney loves illuminating history; returning stolen treasures to their rightful owners and filling the spaces in people’s hearts with stories of their family legacies. But Tess’s own history is filled with gaps: a father she never met, and a mother who spent more time traveling than with her daughter.

Then the enigmatic Dominic Rossi arrives on her San Francisco doorstep with the news that the grandfather she’s never met is in a coma and that she’s destined to inherit half of a hundred-acre apple orchard estate called Bella Vista. The rest is willed to Isabel Johansen, the half sister she never knew she had. Isabel is everything Tess isn’t, but against the rich landscape of Bella Vista, with Isabel and Dominic by her side, Tess begins to discover a world where family comes first and the roots of history run deep.

 

susan wiggs

 

Susan Wiggs’s life is all about family, friends…and fiction. She’s been featured in the national media, including NPR’s Talk of the Nation, and is a popular speaker locally and nationally.

From the very start, her writings have illuminated the everyday dramas of ordinary people. At the age of eight, she self-published her first novel, entitled “A Book About Some Bad Kids.”

Today, she is an international best-selling, award-winning author, with millions of copies of her books in print in numerous countries. Her recent novel, Marrying Daisy Bellamy, took the #1 spot on the New York Times Bestseller List, and The Lakeshore Chronicles have won readers’ hearts around the globe. Her books celebrate the power of love, the timeless bonds of family and the fascinating nuances of human nature.

She lives with her husband and family at the water’s edge on an island in the Pacific Northwest, where she divides her time between sleeping and waking.

 

My Review

Susan Wiggs has a way of sneaking up on a reader and hooking them with her fascinating characterizations, and the beauty of her settings.

Tess Delaney knows something is missing from her life, but she could never have guessed it would be a sister she’d never heard of, or a family she’d never met.

What follows is the story of discovering herself through the connections of a family she’s always dreamed of having, and maybe a little romance along the way.

This book touches on tough family dynamics, forgiveness, and love.

A truly enjoyable read!

I give The Apple Orchard 5 lovely kisses

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