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Ham, Potato and Bean Soup

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What to do with holiday leftovers is as much a tradition as the holidays themselves.   So with that in mind, viagra I decided to go along and add a dish to the leftover tradition.   We had ham, as do a lot of people.  And like lot’s of people, we had lot’s of it left over.  After a few days of eating it I was starting to wonder what else besides sandwiches or frying it up with my morning eggs I could do with it.  I thought about for a little while and decided a soup would be good.  But what kind?  My friend said potato and ham.  I thought genius, but it needed something else.  I then thought bean with bacon!   So I thought use the ham,  instead of bacon.  And our ham, potato and bean soup was born.  This was supposed to be a cream soup, but I couldn’t decide whether to blend just the potato, or the beans, or both.  As I was cooking,  I realized that if I cut some of the potatoes small, and cooked them long enough, the potatoes would start to break down and create a creamy effect.  Thus, solving the problem of what to blend.  In the end, what I got was a brothy soup with bit of a creamy texture that is simply divine.  Enjoy!

 

Ham, Potato and Bean Soup

 

Ham, Potato and Bean Soup
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 med onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 celery ribs
  • 3 potatoes
  • 2 cups chopped ham, fat and grizzle removed
  • 1 can of white cannellini beans, drained
  • 4 cups broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Italian herbs
  • Pinch of thyme
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Olive oil
Instructions
  1. Chop ham to bite size pieces, fat and grizzle removed
  2. Peel and chop carrots and celery
  3. Peel and chop onion
  4. Peel and chop two of the potatoes
  5. The the third potato chop into smaller pieces
  6. Chop garlic clove.
  7. Sauté onion in olive oil till translucent
  8. Add salt and pepper
  9. Add celery and carrots and sauté for a few minutes
  10. Add potatoes and garlic, sauté for a few minutes
  11. Add ham, beans and stock
  12. Add Italian herbs and pinch of thyme
  13. Bring to boil then simmer on low till small potatoes start to disappear
  14. Salt and pepper to taste.
  15. If needed add more herbs

Chicken Soup With Rice and Thyme

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It’s deep in the fall and the weather is unusually warm.  But that doesn’t mean you can’t make a great soup.  And what better one then a classic?   This time I will keep it simple but very flavorful.   I had some leftover chicken broth from a previous meal and froze it.  I decided instead of taking that and making stock out of it I would use it as is to be my base for this soup.  It’s basically chicken water but it lended itself beautifully to this recipe.   But if you don’t have any lying around regular chicken sock will work.  I hope you enjoy it! I did!

 

Chicken soup with Rice and Thyme
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 4 cups chicken broth(water)
  • ½ cup of rice uncooked
  • 3 ribs of celery
  • 2-3 carrots
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Thyme
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. When I say 2 chicken breasts I mean two halves.
  2. Make them good sized ones.
  3. This should still be a hearty soup.
  4. Cut chicken into bite sized chunks
  5. Chop onion
  6. Chop celery
  7. Peel and chop carrots
  8. Chop garlic and separate
  9. In a large stock pot, pilule sauté onion and half of garlic in olive oil
  10. Add celery and carrots
  11. A little thyme
  12. A pinch Salt and pepper
  13. Add chicken and cook till done
  14. While cooking the chicken, cook rice till it's almost done.
  15. When chicken is done, add stock/chicken water
  16. Add bay leaf, garlic and a generous amount of Thyme.
  17. Don't over do the thyme!
  18. It should be prominent but not over powering.
  19. Taste and smell as you add
  20. Salt and pepper to taste.
  21. When rice is almost done add it to the soup.
  22. Cook soup for another 10-15 minutes on medium till rice is fully cooked and soup is fully heated
  23. Chicken should be tender and veggies should still have a little crunch.
  24. If you like softer veggies cook a little longer

Getting Ready For Fall

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Crock and beans

 

With the weather getting chilly and Summer memories fading fast, pharm it’s time to get ready for Fall.  This means pulling out the sweaters and light jackets.  Getting  blankets and comforters out from the top shelf of the linen closet.  Watching leave turn colors.  Dusting off that slow cooker.  Washing the stock pots and digging up those wonderful fall recipes, store or discovering new ones.

Here at House of Zeta it may take us a little time to get used to fall, healing as we tend to be spring and summer people.  But once we do, we go all out.  Slow cooking pork shoulders or roasts.  Baking lasagna’s and sweet pies.  Making lots of soups and stocks.  Roasting root vegetables as they become available.  We start to discover our kitchens again and just like old friends it feels like time never passes.

With the days getting shorter and the nights longer, the farmers markets will have less and less to choose from.  The farmers will start to head back upstate and buckle down.  The weather will start to turn even colder as the days go by.  And we will find ourselves indoors more often, which can only mean one thing.  It’s time to enjoy what warm days are left, to grab that mulled wine and simmer it while you slow cook the night away.

 

Basic Black Beans
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 Lb bag of black beans
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of pepper
  • 4-6 cups water
Instructions
  1. Sort beans to get out rocks or other debris
  2. Soaking them over night or not is up to you
  3. If you soak them, discard liquid the next day and cook with new water
  4. If you don't, then give them a good rinse before cooking
  5. Place beans in slow cooker
  6. Chop onion
  7. Chop garlic
  8. Combine beans, onions, garlic, bay leaves, salt and pepper in slow cooker
  9. Add 4 cups of water
  10. If it covers the beans by ½ inch, don't add more
  11. If not, add till you get ½ inch of water above the beans
  12. Cover and cook for about 4-6 hours on low setting, or until done.
  13. If beans don't seem to be cooking quick enough turn cooker on high for a couple hours
  14. Keep an eye on water level.
  15. It's better to add if needed, then to have to much.
  16. Also if you want, half way through you can add a ham hock or bacon for smokey flavor

Winter Camping

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It’s official.  Camping season is here!  Well almost.  But that didn’t stop us from heading into the woods on this semi warm (21 degrees) winter weekend.  Yes some might call us crazy, buy and this would be one of those times.  But when you feel the need to escape you can’t deny it.  So we hit the trains and trails of Harriman Park and set up camp at our favorite spot, order Lake Skenonto.  We only went for in quick trip this time so we only prepped one meal.  Beef stew.  We wanted something hardy and quick to heat up, as time and day light would be short when we arrived at our campsite.   After trudging through two feet of snow we hit camp and started to prep.  Jason worked on getting a space cleared for a fire and I went hunting for wood.  I came back with very little so we swapped chores and Jason hit the mother load!   I found a log under the snow that we could sit on while our fire roared and I also set up the tent.   After all that work and we rewarded ourselves with a shot of whiskey.   With our fire ablaze we started dinner and enjoyed the serine quiet and beauty of the wilderness.   After dinner and whiskey with a little snow to mellow it out we enjoyed the fire for a while and then headed into the tent to watch a movie.

The next day we woke to a couple of eagles singing a song, made some coffee and breakfast.   After a little leisure time in our winter wonderland we decided to pack it in and slowly made our way back to the train.   We didn’t have time for our usual Chinese farewell meal but that was ok.  After walking through all that snow both ways, just getting home was reward enough.   With our packs off our backs and a congratulatory glass of white wine we are melted into our coach and are dreaming of hitting the trails in spring.

 

 

 

Beef Stew
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
This is a great make a head of time meal for camping.
Ingredients
  • 1 lb beef stew meat
  • 1 32oz can of whole tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper(your choice)
  • 3 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 4 celery stocks chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and slice ¼ inch
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 garlic gloves crushed and separated
  • ¼ teaspoon of oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon of thyme
  • Splash of wine (red or white)
  • Couple dashes of worcestershire sauce
  • Smidge of horseradish
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Flour to dredge meat
  • Olive oil
Instructions
  1. Salt and pepper as you go along
  2. Dredge meat in flour and cook in stock pot with olive oil till they get a little brown on all sides.
  3. About 5 minutes, a quick sear.
  4. Set aside on a plate.
  5. Add onion and celery to pot and cook till onions start to get translucent.
  6. Add thyme and oregano
  7. Add one crushed garlic clove
  8. Add bay leaf
  9. Add potatoes
  10. Splash of wine
  11. Cook till potatoes are half way done
  12. Squeeze tomatoes with hands and put in pot with juice from can
  13. Add carrots, bell pepper, Worcestershire, horseradish
  14. Add meat including any juices.
  15. Add last crushed garlic clove
  16. Salt and pepper to taste
  17. Simmer for 45 - 60 minutes

What To Do With Your Hot Sauce!

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Chile smashing! image

 

As you all know we are now making hot sauces. What started out as Christmas gifts has blown up to be a part time business. Hopefully this year we can make it a full time job. But in the meantime people keep asking us what we use our hot sauce for? Well we like to put it on anything that will stand still. But not everyone is like us, shop so here are a few of our favorite things…

Deviled eggs
Who doesn’t love deviled eggs??? What we do is instead of mustard we add a little hot sauce in the mayonnaise and egg yolk mixture to give it a little kick and a drop on top for decoration.

Hot wings
The Super Bowl favorite or an Oscar guilty pleasure. If you’ve made hot wings at home you can just imagine what out hot sauce will do to those little bits of mouth watering chickadees. Yum!

Pasta salad
Just like the deviled eggs, add a little to your potato salad for a nice punch and an unexpected heat that your guests will love and wonder how you did it.

Chicken salad
This is one of my favorites. I mix this with chicken, mayonnaise, a dash of mustard, celery, carrots and red onions, sometimes a little cilantro, and presto you have the beginning of a great salad or wrap or sandwich.

There are so many things you can do with our hot sauces. Treat them like an ingredient in your kitchen arsenal. Let your imagination go wild. That’s what we do! We hope you like the tips and will use them and create your own fun dishes. Till next time, spicy love to all!!

Canning Is Here…!!!

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String beans and hello beets Dilly string beans

 

Canning is a tradition that has been going on for centuries.  People have preserved everything they could from salting meat and fish, advice to veggies and fruit, rx even burying them in the ground for months on end.  It’s a way to preserve the harvest, or it was.  Most people don’t need to can or ferment vegetables or salt there meats to last on long boat rides to foreign lands or the harsh winter months.  We started a couple years ago when I bought Jason some canning books for Christmas.  We had been making beer and I felt it was the natural progression.  So we filled our cupboards with all kinds of canned food.  After a couple years and the renovation of the kitchen/Lab earlier this year, we noticed we still had a lot of left over and started to use our canned goods as appetizers and side dishes.  Soon we were running out of our supply.  And like our hot sauce people wanted to take some home.  So this fall we have been canning freaks.  Also the local CSA has helped us with more food then we can eat. We’ve canned everything from apples, pestos, soups, made preserves and our very popular chile peppers.  The latest is dilly string beans and yellow beets.  Come February and March we will gorging on our hard work this fall.  Hopefully we can save some for summer BBQ’s!

Pesto, Pesto, Pesto!

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Arugula pesto

 

This year Jason decided to get our local CSA so we could have farm fresh food. We have been getting our fresh veggies, capsule dairy and meat since early summer, and we have been loving it! So have our friends. We’ve been having what I call CSA BBQ’s and CSA dinner parties. One thing about getting all this fresh food is, it really is a lot. So you have to be very creative and eat a lot! Having friends willing to help is a blessing. One thing we’ve been getting is greens. Lots and lots of greens. We eat them for breakfast with fried or poached eggs on top, lunch and dinner. But one of my favorite things we have been doing is taking our arugula, cilantro and parsley and making pesto out of them. Not only do we use all of these tasty greens, we get to enjoy them at our leisure. You can use them as spreads, in pasta, as pizza sauce or add to soups, even rub on a chicken and roast it! The pesto will keep in the fridge for about two weeks or you can  freeze it, which is great way to to make sure it doesn’t go to waste.

 

 

Arugula and Cilantro/Parsley Pesto
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: ½ cup
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cups arugula tightly packed
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoons pine nuts
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ½ lemon squeezed and separated
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Roast pine nuts
  2. Drizzle a small amount of oil on bottom of blender
  3. Add arugula, Parmesan, pine nuts, half of lemon juice, salt and pepper
  4. Start blending and slowly add oil
  5. Blend till you get a good consistency
  6. Taste and add more salt, pepper and rest of the lemon juice if needed.
Notes
I love garlic that's why I added so much. But if that is too much use one clove.
For cilantro parsley pesto you just need to switch out a few ingredients
1 cup packed cilantro leaves
1 cup packed parsley
2 tablespoons almonds(some say blanched almonds but I don't think it's necessary)
And continue as normal.

Pumpkin and Potato Soup

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Pumpkin and Potato Soup - based on Mum's yellow potatoes
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Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 small sugar pumpkin (3.5 - 4lbs)
  • 4-5 medium potatoes
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons of butter
  • ½ cup vegetable stock
  • House of Zeta Homewrecker Hot Sauce (or similar earthy smoked hot sauce)
  • Salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Cut pumpkin in quarters and de-seed
  2. Cut pumpkins one more time in half
  3. Peel potatoes and cut into chunks
  4. Steam both separately
  5. When done drain and let cool
  6. Scrape pumpkin into bowl
  7. Add potatoes, and cream, butter.
  8. Mash together adding some salt and pepper
  9. Place mash mix in blender add stock and blend until smooth
  10. Add two or three dashes of the hot sauce to taste
  11. Salt and pepper to taste of needed
  12. Reheat and serve.
Notes
Ratio of pumpkin to potato should be ⅔ pumpkin to ⅓ potato. Keep this in mind when making soup.

 

 

Pumpkin and Potato Soup

 

Is Pumpkin and Potato soup your new staple for this fall and winter? We think so, and here’s why. Jason and I received an invite to our friends annual pumpkin party this last weekend and were told to make something with pumpkin. It was requested that I make Paula Deens pumpkin gooey cake. No problem. I love it and it’s become a staple in our Thanksgiving meals. It even replaces the pumpkin pie! But we also wanted to bring a savory dish as well. Our first thought was pumpkin and potato mash. A side dish Jason grew up with. But as we cooked every thing and started to put it together we noticed that it was looking and tasting like a great soup. So we added some vegetable stock to thin it out a bit and next thing you know we had an amazing soup! Jason also added a bit of our Home Wrecker hot sauce for a little surprise. At the party people were practically licking their bowls, or was that just us?! We recreated the recipe here. It’s easy and very un-fussy. The hardest part is cutting up the pumpkin. But it’s worth it as you get to roast the seeds! With fall and winter settling in remember your new best friend, pumpkin and potato soup. It’s the perfect starter or side dish with a grilled turkey and cheese sandwich.

Vegetarian Chili for Camping

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Chili Chili fixin's Chili veggies

 

One of the easiest things to make for camping is vegetarian chili. You just chuck everything in a pot, no rx let it simmer for a while and tah dah! It’s done. I’ve made this so many times that I don’t measure anymore. Who am I kidding a never measure! Ok so I’ve gotten better at measuring thanks to writing about what we cook. You can keep it vegetarian or add meat it’s all up to you. We usually are out for a couple days so keeping it meat free is best. I also freeze it so it becomes part of the ice we use to keep everything fresh. I like to add as many fresh ingredients as possible, like tomatoes, corn, carrots, onions, bell peppers and sometimes zucchini. This is a great dish to experiment with and have fun.

 

 

Vegetarian Chili for Camping
Author: 
Recipe type: Main dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8
 
Ingredients
  • 1 8oz can of black beans
  • 1 8oz can of dark kidney beans
  • 1 8oz can of pink beans
  • 1 28oz can of whole tomatoes
  • 1 14.5 oz can of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can of tomato sauce
  • 1-2 6oz cans of tomato paste( depending on how thick you want it)
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 med onion
  • 1 med green bell pepper
  • 1 med red or yellow or orange bell pepper(your choice)
  • 2 carrots(3 if small)
  • 1 med zucchini
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon of cumin
  • 2 tablespoons of chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon of ancho chile powder
  • 1 large or two medium bay leaves
  • ½ tablespoon of salt
  • ½ tablespoon of pepper
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Olive oil
Instructions
  1. Peel and chop onion
  2. Peel and chop carrots
  3. Chop bell peppers and zucchini into cubes
  4. Cut kernels off corn
  5. Chop tomatoes
  6. Peel and rough chop garlic
  7. In large sauce pan add some olive oil and onion
  8. A sprinkle of salt and pepper
  9. Sauté for a few minutes
  10. Add tomatoes and simmer for a few minutes till tomatoes start falling apart
  11. Add remaining vegetables, garlic and cans of tomatoes, sauce and paste
  12. Rinse beans and add them to the pot
  13. Add spices and herbs, salt and pepper
  14. Simmer for about 20 minutes
  15. let cool and put in freezer bags and freeze.
Notes
If you aren't a camper that's ok, this is a great meal anytime. They say to let chili sit overnight that way it incorporates all the flavors. I usually can't wait, but if you can, let the pot cool off, refrigerate and reheat the next day.
Don't for get the hot sauce, cheese and sour cream for the ultimate bowl of chili!

Final hot sauce is here!

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Wow! It’s the last hot sauce of  our hot sauce mania month! We can’t believe it.  So we accidentally took a couple weeks off and our month turned into six weeks.  We are human and needed to rest and enjoy the summer.  But now it is back to work.  And without further ado I give you:

 

Blossoming Tumescence

 

 

Blossoming Tumescence
Author: 
Recipe type: Condiment
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 8 Puya
  • 2 mulato
  • 2 japones
  • 2 New Mexico
  • 1 chipotle
  • 4 garlic
  • ¼ cup chili water
  • ¾ cup of vinegar
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
Instructions
  1. Soak your peppers in hot water for 30 minutes
  2. Either in a bowl weighed down so chili's are submerged or in a ziplock bag
  3. When chili's are done pull off stems and discard
  4. Also discard any seed and veins that come with stems
  5. Combine all ingredients into a blender and blend till smooth
  6. Strain through a sieve and discard any solids
  7. Serve immediately, mind or put on your favorite bottle for later

 

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