Friday, February 25, 2011

Southwestern Pork Soup

I have to admit I was not excited about dinner last night. Even when I was cooking it I was trying to figure out what the backup plan was going to be when no one liked this soup. It didn't look good in the recipe book but the ingredients sounded good so I chose it. Anyway, it was pretty good. I think Carter was the only one who didn't care for it. :)

Southwestern Pork Soup

2teaspoons vegetable oil
1lb boneless pork loin, trimmed of fat, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
4medium green onions, sliced (1/4 cup)
1small jalapeƱo chile, seeded, finely chopped
1clove garlic, finely chopped
1carton (32 oz) Progresso® reduced-sodium chicken broth (4 cups)
2cans (15 to 16 oz each) great northern beans, drained, rinsed
1/2cup loosely packed chopped fresh cilantro
1/4cup loosely packed chopped fresh parsley

1In 3-quart nonstick saucepan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add pork; cook 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until browned. Add onions, chile and garlic; cook and stir 1 minute.
2Add broth and beans. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat; cover and simmer about 10 minutes or until pork is no longer pink in center. Stir in cilantro and parsley; cook until heated through.
One pound of pork boneless loin chops, cut into cubes, would also work well for this recipe.
A squeeze of fresh lime juice over servings of this Mexican-inspired soup adds a wonderful fresh flavor. It also blends well with the chili and cilantro.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Vegetarian Black and White Bean Chili

Last night was really good. However, I totally messed up the recipe! I was accidentally looking the the wrong ingredient list when prepping my ingredients. The soup I was making did not call for cilantro or parsley but it was in there! Oops. It was really good though so I am adding it to the ingredient list for this recipe.

1tablespoon vegetable oil
1large onion, chopped (1 cup)
4cloves garlic, finely chopped (2 teaspoons)
1can (15.5 oz) great northern beans, drained, rinsed
1can (15 oz) Progresso® black beans, drained, rinsed
2cans (14.5 oz each) fire-roasted crushed tomatoes, undrained (I used a large jar of my canned tomatoes)
1can (11 oz) Green Giant® Mexicorn® whole kernel corn with red and green peppers
1can (4 oz) Old El Paso® chopped green chiles, undrained
1can (14 oz) vegetable broth
1tablespoon chili powder
1teaspoon ground cumin
1/2teaspoon salt
If you want to...add 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley and 1/2 cup cilantro :)

Sour cream, if desired

1In 4-quart saucepan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until tender.
2Stir in remaining ingredients except sour cream. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3Top each serving with sour cream.
Stir in cornmeal to thicken chili slightly, or simply cook longer on low heat; this will not only thicken the chili but blend the flavors.
Fire-roasted tomatoes add a slightly smoky flavor to this easy chili.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Soup Week Returns!

My family has been asking me to plan another Soup Week like we did last year so I finally managed to plan it. I will be posting our nightly soup/recipe for our memories so bear with me!

Last night I made Tortilla Soup which I have made several times in the past. I never use the same recipe so this was a new soup for us. It was SO easy too!

4 cups chicken broth
1 cup thick-n-chunky salsa
2 cups chicken pieces (shredded or chicken breast cut up)
3/4 Tbsp ground cumin

Heat all ingredients together until boiling. Serve over tortilla chip with cheese on top. Add avocado and cilantro on top if you like too.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Blizzard 2011

We had two snow days in a row! The kids enjoyed that and we had a lot of time to play in the snow.

RIley getting ready to go out and play!

Riley decorated the house for us.

We payed some hockey and soccer in the driveway.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

"You don’t pay back a favor, you pay it forward. "

So we continue to work hard every day to "Pay it Forward." The large amount of snowfall we had this week allowed us some perfect opportunities to help out some neighbors. There is one story I have to share because we need this added to our blog for memories. As I mentioned in the past post about this topic, Matt and I really want to include the kids in our "paying it forward." We ask them for ideas and when we do something our intention is to have them be a part of it. Well, last weekend we stopped at McDonalds for some drinks. The kids were in the back watching a movie with their headsets on. While in the drive thru line I noticed the truck behind us had a guy in the drivers seat and a dog in the passenger seat. I said to Matt, "Buy his lunch and we can use our pay it forward card." He agreed so when we got up to the window, we told them we wanted to pay for the guy behind us and asked that they give him the card. When they got to the window I turned around to see if the man did indeed give them the card and I noticed at that time that it was NOT a dog but a woman! OOPS! I felt horrible! BUt they were very appreciative, they honked at us and waved. As we pulled out of the parking lot and down the street, I said to Matt, "Do you think we should have told the kids?" HAHA They were completely sucked into their movie and they had no idea we had even gone to McDonalds, so thy certainly had not been a part of our "Pay it Forward" moment!!!! Oh well, there will be more instances but we laughed at ourselves and will try to remember next time!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Snow Fort

Last weekend Matt and Riley went through the neighborhood selling Girl Scout cookies so Carter and I decided to build a fort. I think Carter had intended on helping me but he got distracted. I built the fort and he watched :) Either way we had a great time.

The next day the kids sprayed it as part of a badge Riley is working on for Girl Scouts. As you can see the morning sun warmed it up enough to lean....A LOT! It still looks like this after 4 days. Carter checks everyday to see if it has fallen.