Tag Archives: butternut squash

Now, for something completely different:

I moved in with my grandpa. (He’s doing a favor for me, not me for him, I had nowhere to live, and very suddenly)

He’s allegric to gluten (like, gets hives). I’m lactose intolerant (by varying degrees but generally stay away from cheese and milk. Yogurt and I are best friends, I’ve never had any problems with “real” yogurt).

Together, we cannot eat about 95% of my favorite things. Lucky for me, he’s very outgoing in the food department. I have plans for both Thai and Indian curries as well as some butternut squash, carrot and sweet potato soup that I think he will like.

Our meals normally center around a slow cooker. Thank god, I found one shortly after I moved in – it has been a life saver. I work teaching until 4pm, then go to the health center and work three or four more hours, so I’m rarely home before 7pm.  Even though prepping the dinner the night before is hard on me after coming home late already, it’s better than not having any dinner at all the next night!

Tonight: Beef stew.

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The Trials of French Onion Soup

One of the families I work for, the mother is a really good cook. She doesn’t cook for me regularly, but when she offers me leftovers, I take them. The first time, she heated up some frozen butternut squash soup she had. It was so tasty, filling and really good for you that I made my own at home (and I have the ingredients to do it again soon!). I do have to give her a lot of credit, because of just talking to her and absorbing information from her cooking, I’ve learned to cook more effectively (I am a better baker, and she appreciates me because of that).

A month ago she made french onion stew with beef in the slow cooker, raved about it and had me prepare it for slow cooker one afternoon. She told me the majority of the recipe as I went, and then the next day, she gave me some of the leftovers. Again, all I could think about was making it for myself! I looked up recipes and most only used onions and beef stock which I was fine with.

Then that weekend, when I do most of my cooking, I was very sick but still wanted this soup and got some from panera which was multiple levels below her soup, but still so good. I tried making it a couple days later, because I had also apparently bought two bags of onions two weeks in a row! Way too many onions.

I tried making it about a week ago. I was silly and though it was good, I didn’t caramelize the onions enough. You can see that they are still mostly white (With red wine coloring them) but they should have been mostly brown! If I just let go a couple minutes longer, it would have been fine.

It was pretty tasty, but I also made it too thick. Eating it that night was fine but the next day it was too thick, mostly tasted just like onion soup, not the french part!

It was a learning experience though: next time, make sure the onions are fully caramelized and don’t thicken the stock too much! And I want to buy better cheese next time to put in the soup as well as melt over bread. I want to try this again soon though, I love soup and soup weather will soon be over. Does anyone have any yummy soup suggestions? Or ways to better my french onion experience next time?

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