Friday, February 28, 2014

Irish Potato Soup

Irish Potato Soup Ingredients

  • 1 Pound Melissa’s Produce Dutch Yellow Potatoes
  • 1 Pound Melissa’s Produce Ruby Gold Potatoes
  •  ¼ Pound thick cut bacon (Smoked and center cut is best)
  • ½ Large sweet brown onion
  • 3 Garlic cloves – minced
  • ½ Trimmed Melissa’s Produce Leek-  cut in ¼ inch slices (¼ white segments  and ¼ green segments)
  • 1 Bunch Melissa’s Produce Flowering Kale – cut or torn into one inch segments (may substitute any type of kale or cabbage)
  • ¼ Cup Guinness stout
  • 3 Cups chicken stock
  • 3 Cups milk (low fat or whole)
  • 1 Quart heavy cream

Soup Instructions

1)      Using a stock pot, boil the potatoes in salted water until potato smashes with flat fork
-While potatoes boil-
2)      In a deep pan, cook bacon to a light crisp  – reserve ½ rendered fat

3)      Using the same pan that you cooked the bacon, adjust heat to medium.  Add onions, garlic and leek slices to hot pan.  
4)      When onions begin to sweat, add kale.  Cook until kale begins to wilt. Remove from heat. 

6)      Drain potatoes and gently smash potatoes until they are all broken up. You want a very chunky mash.
7)      Add potatoes to the pan and add some of the reserved bacon fat, salt, lemon juice, Guinness,  salt and fresh pepper to taste.
8)      With heat still on Medium-high, integrate the potatoes and vegetables.  Allowing the potatoes to slightly brown and stick to the pan.
9)   Using the same stockpot that you boiled the potatoes,  add the chicken stock, milk and heavy cream.Heat until milk mixture begins to simmer. Stir regularly.
10)   Add the potato mixture to milk mixture. Stir to integrate ingredients.
11)   Cook on medium-low heat for at least 10 minutes, longer for a thicker soup.
12)   Serve with chives or green onions.


At step  8, add one cup of milk and ½ cup butter to the potato mixture.
Whip potatoes until thick and fluffy. 

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Oven Roasted Smoked Sausage and Potatoes


1 package of smoked sausage, sliced into rounds

1 large onion, peeled and chopped

5 large potatoes, peeled and chopped into ½ inch cubes

olive oil

fine sea salt

freshly ground black pepper

sweet paprika

dried thyme

a handful of greated strong cheddar cheese


Preheat the oven to 400*F.

Line a large baking tray (with sides) with several sheets of foil, and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.

Put the sausage rounds, onions, and potatoes into a large bowl. Drizzle with a couple TBS of olive oil and season to taste with salt, pepper, paprika and dried thyme. Toss together with your hands until everything is evenly distributed. Pour this out onto the baking tray, and spread it out as much as you can.

Place into the heated oven and roast for 45 minutes to an hour, stirring every 15 minutes or so, until the potatoes are golden brown and tender. Turn off the oven.

Scatter the cheese over top of the cooked meat and potatoes, Pop back into the oven a few minutes to melt the cheese.

Broccoli and Cheese Tartine


  • 1/2 head of broccoli, florets trimmed 
  • Olive oil
  • Salt 
  • Pepper
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 garlic clove, minced 
  • 1 1/4 cup grated Gruyere cheese, divided
  • 2 slices of sourdough bread 
  • Red pepper flakes 


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. On a small, parchment-lined baking sheet, spread out the florets of broccoli. Toss them with about a tablespoon of olive oil and a few pinches of salt and pepper. Transfer to the oven to roast for 15 minutes, just until they're bright green in color. Remove from the oven and set aside. 
  2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan set over medium heat, add the butter. When the butter is melted, pour in the flour and mix until a paste forms. Cook the flour/butter mixture for about a minute, stirring the entire time. Pour in the milk and whisk vigorously.Stir in the minced garlic and bring the mixture to a gentle simmer, until the mixture has thickened and coats the back of a wooden spoon, about 3-5 minutes. Turn the heat off and stir in 3/4 cup of the grated Gruyere cheese, along with salt to taste (I added about 1/2 teaspoon of salt) and a few pinches of black pepper. 
  3. To assemble the tartines, place slices of bread on a baking sheet. Divide the broccoli between the bread. Spoon a few tablespoons the béchamel sauce over the broccoli and top with a handful of Gruyere. Sprinkle the tops with a few pinches of red pepper flakes. Place the tartines under the broiler (being sure to watch them the entire time!) and bake until the cheese is melted and lightly golden brown, about 3-5 minutes.
Yield: Makes 2 tartines

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Southern Fried Cabbage

Southern Fried Cabbage
Serve 4 (or 2 hungry bikers)


5-6 strips of bacon
1 head cabbage, sliced
1 onion, diced
¼ cup chicken broth (I use low sodium broth)
1 tsp vinegar (optional)
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper


In large skillet, (I use cast iron) fry the bacon until crispy, remove to a paper towel to drain
Place chopped cabbage and onion in the skillet with the bacon fat over medium heat and cook until it begins to wilt a bit
Crumble the bacon and add to the pan
Add in the chicken stock,vinegar, salt and pepper, cover and allow it to simmer for 10 minutes
Serve hot (try adding some diced apples, sliced sausage, noodles, or what ever tickles your fancy)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

5 Minute Fudge


1 and 2/3 cups sugar
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (6 ounce) package of milk chocolate chips
16 large marshmallows
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup chopped walnuts


Combine sugar, milk, butter and salt in a medium sized saucepan. 
Bring to a boil, cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly. 
Add in chocolate chips; cook until melted. 
Remove from heat; 
Stir in marshmallows, vanilla and nuts. 
Mix well. 
Pour into a 8-inch pan. 
Cool cut into squares.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Fresh Pickled Cucumber Salad


7-cups unpeeled pickling cucumbers sliced thin (about 7 large dills)
1-cup sliced onions
1-cup sliced bell peppers
1-tbsp salt
1 cup white vinegar
2-cups sugar ( I would substitute with stevia for lower carb)
1-tsp celery seed
1-tsp mustard seed

optional, increase by 2 or 3 more dills, leave out peppers


Mix cucumbers, onions, peppers and salt; set a side
Put vinegar, sugar, celery seed and mustard seed in a pot and bring to a boil
Remove from heat and let cool for one hour
Pour mixture over cucumbers
Put in jars and store in refrigerator
Will keep up to 2 months

Makes 2 quart jars.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Fried Sausage Cabbage

FRIED CABBAGE WITH SAUSAGE (great for low carbers)

This is a quick and easy dish.


1 stick butter or margarine
1 small head of cabbage, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 pound smoked sausage, sliced into round pieces (I use turkey)
1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes or rotel tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper


Melt butter in large skillet. 
Add cabbage, onion, and cook on medium high for about 5 minutes stirring to keep from sticking to pan. Add remaining ingredients, cover and simmer for 20 – 25 minutes.
Makes about 8 servings. 

Only 4 g net carbs per serving.

Veggie Soup

Eat Your Greens Detox Soup
from The Oh She Glows Cookbook
Serves 3
modified to get Shirley to eat it (no mushrooms)


1 1/2 teaspoons coconut oil or olive oil
1 sweet onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups sliced cremini or white button mushrooms (about 8 ounces)
3 cups of potatoes
1 cup chopped carrots
2 cups chopped broccoli florets
Fine-grain sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 1/2 to 3 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
5 cups vegetable broth
2 large nori seaweed sheets, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) strips (optional)
2 cups (500 mL) torn kale leaves
Fresh lemon juice, for serving (optional)


In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for about 5 minutes, until the onion is soft and translucent.

Add the mushrooms, carrots, and broccoli and stir to combine. Season generously with salt and pepper and sauté for 5 minutes more.

If using potato substitute, may need to add some of the vegetable stock, adding broccoli and carrots first, then the potatoes.

Stir in the ginger, turmeric, cumin, and cinnamon and sauté for 1 to 2 minutes, until fragrant.

Add the broth and stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the vegetables are tender, 10 to 20 minutes.

Just before serving, stir in the nori (if using) and kale and cook until wilted. Season with salt and pepper and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, if desired.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

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  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium chopped onion
  • 1 medium chopped red bell pepper
  • 2 (6.3-ounce) boxes Israeli couscous
  • 3 1/2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced sun-dried tomatoes, packed without oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 bacon slices
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 (10-ounce) package fresh spinach
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Cooking spray


1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper; cook 6 minutes. Add couscous, and cook 5 more minutes. Add broth, tomato, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and cook, covered, over medium-low heat 12-15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat.
3. Cook the bacon in a nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Crumble and reserve. Wipe skillet.
4. Heat remaining oil in skillet. Add garlic; cook 30 seconds. Add spinach; cook 1 minute.
5. Add spinach, bacon, and lemon juice to couscous mixture; toss to combine. Transfer stuffing to 11- x 7-inch baking dish lightly coated with cooking spray, and cover with foil. Bake 15 minutes or until heated through.