Tag Archives: appetizer

Turnip & Sweet Potato Soup

12 May

Oh, the joys trials joys of a late winter/early spring CSA. So many root vegetables in March and April! Pounds of sweet potatoes, turnips, or rutabagas each week. Though now that it’s a bit warmer and there’s just greens greens and more greens, I kind of miss sweet potatoes. If you told me a month ago that I’d be saying that now, I would have said you were crazy, but there it is.

Actually, I don’t mind having a million sweet potatoes. I love ’em. I figured out how to cook them in the microwave, which makes for quick, last-minute meals. My favorite has been sweet potato & black bean quesadillas. Muy delicioso.

Rutabagas and turnips, on the other hand… Honestly, if I don’t see another rutabaga or turnip for a decade, I’d be okay with that.

At any rate, I had to figure out something to do with these veggies. I actually made this soup a couple months ago and forgot to post it, so here it is! If you get any last root veggies from your garden, try this out. It’s not incredibly flavorful, so you really taste the fresh vegetables. And I think that makes the walnuts necessary. The kale I could have done without, to be honest, but that was a healthy addition, so whatevs. It’s not very substantial, so serve this as an appetizer or side dish.

IMG_3134

Turnip and Sweet Potato Soup adapted from The New York Times

1 T olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound turnips, peeled and diced
1/4 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
6 cups water or vegetable stock
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste
6 oz curly kale, stemmed and washed (optional)
1/3 cup toasted walnuts, chopped (optional)

Heat the oil over medium in a large soup pot. Add the onion and garlic and cook until tender, about 4-5 minutes.

Add the turnips, potatoes, water/stock, bay leaf, and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer 45-60 minutes, until the turnips are very tender. Remove the bay leaf.

Optional: While the soup is simmering, blanch the kale in boiling salted water just until tender, 1-2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl of cold water, drain, and squeeze out excess water. Slice into thin strips.

After removing the bay leaf from your soup, puree with a hand blender or in batches in a regular blender. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve in bowls topped with greens and toasted walnuts.

Turnip Soup

 

Linking Up With:

Funday Monday from Still Being Molly
Block Party from Hungry Happenings
Made by you Monday from Skip to my Lou
Inspiration Monday from Twelve O Eight
Time to Sparkle from Love Grows Wild
Life of the Party from The Grant Life
City of Links Party from City of Creative Dreams

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Mini Party Quiches

20 Nov

Can you tell we like things mini? Mini things are so cute!

Last weekend my family and I threw a surprise party for my Dad’s 50th birthday. Once I got my baking assignments, I called Betsy, and we got together that morning to put together a couple dishes. We made a simple blueberry cobbler, but the mini quiches were the highlight, and we made a TON of them. Quadrupling the recipe may have been a little overboard — there were plenty leftover — but we wanted to be prepared. We made two different varieties: a bacon cheddar quiche and a spinach, tomato, and swiss quiche. Deelish!

We began by mixing up the fillings and setting them aside.

  • For the bacon cheddar: Betsy cooked up 10 slices of bacon, let them cool, and then crumbled them up. I mixed 1 8-oz block softened cream cheese, 4 T milk, 4 eggs, and 2 T dried garlic flakes into a large bowl, and beat it with an electric mixer on low until it got relatively smooth. I stirred in 2 cups grated extra sharp cheddar cheese and set the bowl aside. The bowl of cheese mush looked pretty disgusting, especially sitting next to a plate of bacon bits.
    Milk, eggs, and cheese... yum!Gross Cheese Mixture
  • For the SpinTomSwiss: I chopped up 1 1/2 hot house tomatoes and a couple handfuls of spinach and set them aside. Then I mixed 2 8-oz blocks softened cream cheese, 2 T milk, 4 eggs, and 2 T oregano into a large bowl, and beat it with an electric mixer on low until it got relatively smooth. I stirred in 1 cup grated swiss cheese and set the bowl aside. This one looked disgusting too.

Now for the tricky part. We greased some mini muffin pans and set them out. I un-popped a tin of crescent rolls, spread them on the counter, and mushed the scoring lines back together so it would be one big square instead of divided into the triangles. Betsy used a circle cookie cutter and cut round pieces of dough that I shaped into the mini muffin pan.Cutting DoughWord to the wise: Leave the dough in the fridge as long as possible before you take it out, and work quickly with the dough once you open the tin. The dough seizes up really quickly. We tried to roll out the leftover dough and cut it again, and it was REALLY hard. The dough becomes really elastic, so when we tried to spread it into the muffin tin, it just shrunk back up on itself. If you have an extra couple dollars to spend, I recommend just buying a couple extra tins of crescent rolls and tossing the old dough. We re-used a little bit of the dough, then got frustrated and threw it out. So in the end, it took about 3 tins of crescent rolls to make the base for 48 mini quiches.

Dough Cups
So once we lined all the muffin tins with dough, I filled them up.

  • Bacon Cheddar:  Sprinkle bacon in the bottom of each quiche cup. Fill each cup with about 1 tsp of the cheddar mixture. Sprinkle a couple more pieces of bacon on top. (This just makes it easier to identify what it is, which is nice visually, but also is important if you have any vegetarians in your crowd.)
    Mmm... bacon cupsBubbling Bacon Cheddar Quiches
  • SpinTomSwiss: Sprinkle tomato and spinach pieces in the bottom of each quiche cup. Fill each cup with about 1 tsp of the swiss mixture.
    Spinach and Tomato CupsBubbling Spinach Tomato & Swiss Quiches

Bake on 375 F for 10-12 minutes. The bread edges of the quiche will start to turn a golden brown, and the tops might get a little bubbly.
Golden Brown Edges

They’re so cute! The bacon cheddar is a nice golden yellow color, and the SpinTomSwiss is more of a white color.

Mini Party Quiches!

How Sue Sees It:

  • The most difficult part of this is definitely working with the dough. If you want them to look nice, like if you’re serving them at a party, then don’t worry about re-using the dough. Just buy extra, toss the leftover dough, and don’t worry about it. But if you care more about taste than looks, just cram the dough down there however you can. Even if the dough kind of sits on the bottom and doesn’t make a cup, the dough will still rise and the egg mixture will stiffen enough that it will still hold a firm muffin shape.
  • And don’t worry too much about over-filling the cups either, unless you’re going for a nice uniform look. It will still hold a muffin shape.
  • Take some time to experiment with your own flavors! The original recipe I found called for bacon and swiss, and I just modified the recipe a bit more to our crowd’s tastes. As long as you preserve the basic egg and dairy components, you can add or substitute pretty much whatever else you want in there.

Betsy & Susie