Good morning, readers. Here are today's requests: soups and more soups, particularly Schlotzsky's Thai chicken and rice; where to buy poke salad already picked and bagged, and the Yule Log from the Bluff View Inn.
A reader posed this question: Do you take recipes that are not original? Aw, I answered, nothing is truly original. And then again, I reconsidered, everything is truly original, because it is made with a certain twist by each cook. Her question prompted the request for soups of any flavor.
A traveler found a serendipitous $4 purchase in an airport, "a large bowl of Thai chicken and rice soup that was served steaming hot and had just a mild Thai taste. I would love Schlotzsky's recipe or yours."
Etta Davis Whaley wants to get her poke salad all bagged and ready to eat. She added, "I'm sure there are more people wondering the same thing."
And finally, Charlotte Freeman "misplaced one of my all-time favorite recipes. It was a Yule log recipe by the chef from Bluff View ... easy and delicious. I would like to make it for a pre-Halloween event."
Here's Mary Ellen Maycann's recipe for a tomato soup made with canned tomatoes and tomato sauce.
8 ounces grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup fresh basil or more if desired
2 (29-ounce) cans tomato sauce
1 (14-ounce) can petite diced tomatoes (fresh tomatoes may be substituted)
1 pint half-and-half
Pulse Parmesan and basil in a food processor until fine. Combine all ingredients in a large soup pot, and cook over medium to high heat until almost bubbling. Do not boil. Drop temperature to low and continue to cook until heated thoroughly. You may cook on low for up to 2 hours.
Dainy Garland Masic thinks that this soup is similar to one served at Rembrandt's.
Jack Fry's Tomato Artichoke Soup
4 tomatoes, peeled and pureed
6 artichoke hearts, quartered
2 cups milk
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
1 cup butter
1/2 large yellow onion, diced
Pinch white pepper
1 tablespoon basil
3/4 teaspoon oregano
1/2 cup flour
Combine tomatoes, artichoke hearts, milk, chicken stock and cream in a saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, sauté onion and seasonings in butter. Add flour slowly and cook, stirring, until mixture is golden brown.
Slowly add onion roux to artichoke mixture, stirring constantly, and cook until soup thickens.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Here's another in a wonderful assortment of cold-oven pound cakes, this one made with cream cheese and sent by Deb in Georgia.
Cold-Oven Cream Cheese Pound Cake
3 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon salt
11/2 cups butter, softened
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese
3 cups granulated sugar
6 large eggs
11/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Do not preheat the oven. Grease and flour a 12-cup tube pan. Sift together the flour and salt, and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, cream cheese and sugar on low speed for 10 minutes, or until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs alternately with the dry ingredients, mixing well after each addition. Add the vanilla. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Set the oven temperature to 325 F and bake for 11/2 hours or until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan.
Tatia Pender had a chicken potpie that was making the rounds at her church. She shared the recipe gladly, and one of her friends, who shall remain anonymous, one night created a shortcut version that is as good as the original. So here are two recipes, a slow version and a speedy version.
Chicken Potpie, Slow Version
1 stick butter
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup half-and-half
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 cups chopped chicken
1 cup small frozen peas
Sauté in butter the onion, carrots and celery for about 10 minutes. Add flour, stir well and cook about 1 minute.
Combine broth and half-and-half, and gradually add to vegetable mix. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until thick. Add salt and pepper and chicken. Fold in peas last.
Spray a glass pan with Pam. Pour in mixture and top with pastry (recipe follows).
1 cup self-rising flour
1 cup buttermilk
1 stick butter, melted
Mix together and top chicken pie mixture. Bake at 400 F for 30 to 40 minutes.
Chicken Potpie, Fast Version
1 bag frozen peas or mixed vegetables
1 rotisserie chicken, skin removed and chicken cut in chunks
2 cans cream of celery soup
1/2 can or so of water
Cook vegetables and add them to a bowl with chicken. Stir in soup and water. Mix well and put in a glass pan sprayed with Pam. Top with pastry (above) and bake as directed.
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