Hearty Potato and Vegetable Soup

This rich soup is filling and very easy to make – the prep time only takes about 15 minutes, and then you can let it simmer as go about your business. I got the inspiration from RecipeGirl.com and then tweaked the recipe based on what I had on hand.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/2 white or yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 large russet potato, chopped into 1/2 – 1 inch cubes
  • 1 1/2 cup chopped vegetables, such as: carrots, peas, green beans, corn, spinach (I used frozen mixed vegetables plus some frozen spinach)

Directions:

1. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat until it begins to shimmer, about 1 1/2 minutes. Add garlic and onions and reduce heat to medium, then cook, stirring occasionally, until onions start to get soft.

2. Add the flour and stir until it coats the onions. Cook for an additional 2 minutes, or until the flour just starts to become golden in color. Be careful not to overcook the flour.

3. Pour in the vegetable stock and stir in the potatoes and vegetables. Reduce heat to low and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 45 minutes. Enjoy!

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Raisin & Almond Granola

I recently made my own version of a granola recipe from the cookbook Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson  – a wonderful birthday present from my friend Ranjita! It’s surprisingly easy to whip up a batch of it with ingredients you may even already have in your pantry.

What you’ll need:

  • 2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1/3 cup sliced almonds, pecans, or walnuts (I used almonds)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened large-flake coconut (this sounds delicious but I didn’t have any when I made it)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/3 cup raisins (I used one of those 1 1/2 oz boxes which is about the same quantity)
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp butter
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/8 cup pumpkin pie spice (or just use a dash of cinnamon and/or nutmeg if you don’t have any)

Directions:

1. Preheat the over to 300F. Set out a rimmed baking sheet.

2. Combine the oats, nuts, salt, raisins, and coconut (if using) in a medium mixing bowl. Heat the butter in a small saucepan and then add the maple syrup. Whisk together until combined and then pour over the oat mixture and stir until everything is mixed together. Spread the mixture in a thin layer on the baking sheet.

3. Bake for 25 minutes, stirring once halfway through the cooking time. The oats will be a golden color when done. Remove from the oven and press down on the granola with a metal spatula to help it clump as it cools. Allow it to cool completely then store in an airtight container to enjoy over the coming week!