One day closer to my hero being home…

Foodie Friday!

I’ve decided that Friday will be recipe day.

Stop laughing.  I can do this.  Really.  I do have some recipes written down.

Stop laughing.

Earlier this week, after a really long day of homeschooling, followed by four hours of coaching, I was hungry.  Really hungry.  And I was craving Panera’s broccoli cheese soup in a bread bowl.  So even though it was after nine and we had an early morning ahead of us, I headed toward that delectable diner with the thought of their scrumptious soup filling my mouth.

It was closed.  Panera, apparently, closes at NINE.  The nerve! Nobody asked me if they could close that early.  I needed them to be open until 9:30!!! So I went home, terribly disappointed and still hungry.  I vowed to never be forced to rely on Panera for good, crusty soup bowls and broccoli soup again.  I would make my OWN.

Yesterday, being my day off, I decided to try my hand at making my own bread bowls.  I used this recipe as a guide, then went off from there.

Bread Bowls

I have yet to master the art of making a sourdough starter, so my bread bowls are just a simple bread recipe with a few things that I’ve changed here and there.

  • 1 1/4 cups of hot water
  • 1 1/4 cups of milk
  • 1 tablespoon of yeast
  • 1/2 cup of honey
  • 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup of butter or olive oil, or a mix of the two
  • 2 eggs

In a large mixing bowl, combine ingredients.  Let them rest for a couple of minutes while you scramble around for the rest of the ingredients.

  • 2 teaspoons of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
  • about 7 cups of freshly ground flour (that’s what I use)

Now, most recipes will tell you to combine your dry ingredients before adding them.  I find that I’m too lazy to do that.  So I add a cup of flour, then a teaspoon of salt, then another cup of flour, then the nutmeg (Nutmeg.  I can’t think of a spice I love more), then another cup of flour, then the salt.  Continue to add the flour cup by cup until the dough has pulled away from the sides of the bowl and is sticking together.  It should feel slightly tacky, but should not stick to your finger as you pull it away.  Once all the flour is added, mix for 8-10 minutes.  This amount of time is different for me every time I make bread, because I always forget to set a timer, and I get busy doing other things, so I come back to it when I remember.

Place dough in a greased bowl and cover.  Let it rise for at least thirty minutes, but no longer than an hour.  Punch dough down, and divide into eight.  Shape each clump of dough into a ball.  The the balls on a greased cookie sheet and cover.  Let rise another 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400*.

  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tablespoon of water

Mix the egg white and water together, brush about half the mixture on the bread bowls.  Bake the bowls for 15 minutes (ish).  Brush the egg white mixture on again, continue baking for another 15 minutes.

Broccoli Cheese Soup

It is a known fact that my children do not like broccoli.  For this, I blame their father.  My Hero is not a vegetable lover.  Thankfully, however, he realizes the importance of eating them, and will typically choke down what I serve with a smile. Most of the time, he loves my cooking, but if I serve veggies as a side and not in something like Chicken Pot Pie, he doesn’t really care for the taste.  The one veggie he refuses to eat is broccoli.  The children, being incredibly fast learners, picked this up from an early age, and also refuse to eat broccoli.  However, as I’ve mentioned, I LOVE broccoli cheese soup.  So I decided to force my children to eat it for dinner last night.  They both ate the whole bowl.

  • 4 cups of chicken broth (I make my own, but a box from the store should work just fine)
  • 4 summer squash (or a mix of zucchini and summer squash)
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 butter
  • 1/2 cup of freshly ground flour

Cut up the summer squash and zucchini, and place in a pot with the chicken broth.  Bring to a boil, then let it simmer.  While the broth is simmering, finely chop your onion.  Heat a skillet, then add the butter.  Once the butter is melted, saute’ the onion for 7-10 minutes.  Remove the onion with a slotted spoon.  Add flour to the remaining butter.  If needed, add a little olive oil to make a thick paste.  Cook for 5-7 minutes, whisking constantly.

Place the squash and 1 cup of the chicken broth in a blender.  Puree.  Return to broth with onions and flour mixture.

  • 2 carrots, grated
  • 2 1/2 cups of finely chopped broccoli
  • 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
  • 1-2 teaspoons of salt (to your taste)
  • 1 1/2 cups of cream or whole milk
  • 1 block of cheddar or marbled cheese
  • freshly ground black pepper

Add remaining ingredients.  Bring to a boil, let it simmer for about 20 minutes.  Puree half of the soup.  Add more salt or nutmeg as needed to bring the flavor to your liking.

There you have it folks.  I really can write down a recipe.  Hopefully I didn’t leave out anything important!

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