Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Soup

We've had a lot of rain and cloudiness this past week so I thought it was time for some good old comfort food and what is better on a rainy day than a bowl of creamy, cheesy, soup and some homemade rolls. One of my favorite meals and definitely a favorite of my kids. This recipe is from Picky Palate and it's wonderful! My kids ranked this soup up with their favorites: chicken noodle soup and creamy chicken and wild rice soup, so it'll be on my soup short list for when I want a kid-pleasing meal. This would be a great soup to serve with a slice of pumpkin bread this fall.

Cheesy Chicken and Rice Soup

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 stalks celery, chopped
3 large carrots, peeled and chopped
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 stick, 8 tablespoons, butter
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2, 32 oz cartons chicken broth or stock (may not use all)
8 oz medium cheddar cheese, grated (about 2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
2 teaspoons chicken bouillon
3 cups cooked and shredded chicken
3-4 cups cooked rice (I cooked 2 cups uncooked rice, which is about 4 cups cooked)
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup cream, half and half, or fat free evaporated milk
salt and pepper to taste

Place oil in a large dutch oven/soup pot and heat over medium heat. When oil is hot add onion, celery, and carrots. Stir and cook for about 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in garlic and cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat.

In another saucepan melt butter over medium heat. Slowly whisk in flour, salt, and pepper and cook for a minute until thick and bubbly. Slowly whisk in one 32 oz carton of chicken broth. Increase heat slightly and keep whisking until broth gets thick and creamy, about 3-5 minutes. Once thick, turn heat to low and add cheese, stirring until smooth. Add hot sauce. Add this cheese sauce to the large soup pot with the vegetables. Add chicken bouillon, shredded chicken, and rice. Add another 2 cups of chicken broth, sour cream, and cream. Stir to combine. Add more chicken broth as needed to get soup to desired consistency (I used an additional 2 cups of chicken broth). Heat through, then turn heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally for 10-20 minutes. Serve with some shredded cheese on individual servings.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Easy Crock Pot Saucy Meatballs

I recently saw this recipe on Pinterest, originally pinned from Food.com under the title "'Please make those meatballs!' Crock Pot Meatballs". I had all the ingredients already so I decided one morning to throw it all in the crockpot and try the recipe out. It turned out super good. Not foodie food at all, but comforting and easy. My family really enjoyed it. I served the meatballs over mashed potatoes with buttered peas and lingonberry preserves.

Easy Crock Pot Saucy Meatballs

2 lb frozen meatballs (I used Armor brand)
2 can cream of mushroom soup
1 packet brown gravy mix (can use low sodium)
1, 14.5 oz can low sodium chicken broth

Place meatballs in slow cooker. In a bowl mix together soups, gravy mix, and chicken broth, whisking to combine. Pour soup mixture over the meatballs in slow cooker. Cook on low 5-6 hours. Serve over mashed potatoes, rice, or egg noodles.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Oh my goodness, these have got to be the naughtiest cookies I have ever made. Naughty!! But SOooooo good! The recipe is of course Jenny Flake's, of Picky Palate, famous recipe and it is to die for. The ooey gooey richness of the slightly melty Double Stuf Oreo in the middle is incredible. It really is a hugely delicious cookie. Depending on how much cookie dough you cloak these bad boys in, you get anywhere from 12-24 cookies. I made monsters, so I only got 12. Next time I think I'll make them a little smaller.

Oreo Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 sticks butter, softened
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour (plus 1/4 cup for high altitude)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1, 10 oz bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
12-24 Double Stuf Oreo Cookies

Preheat oven to 350. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone liner (I used stoneware baking sheets, so I didn't use parchment or silicone liners).

Add the butter and sugars to the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat together until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, beating until well combined.

In a separate bowl combine flour, salt, and baking soda. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, then add the chocolate chips, beating until just combined.

With a large cookie scoop, take one scoop of dough and place it on top of an Oreo. Take another scoop of dough and place it on the bottom of the Oreo. Seal the edges together by pressing and cupping the dough in hand until the Oreo is completely enclosed and is in the shape of a patty. Repeat with remaining dough and cookies.

Place the stuffed cookies onto prepared baking sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake for 11-17 minutes, until cookies are cooked through. Let cookies cool for at least 5 minutes before transferring to cooling racks.