Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Potato and watercress soup, in preparation for fall that might never come to Houston

After all the cold weather talk I have heard from my friends back North I decided I needed soup. It can be cheap and healthy and I would like make soup more often as a way to stretch our grocery dollar. So I pulled out my New England Soup Factory cook book, a book I got at Costco last year and pursued the pages. Potato-Watercress soup seemed like a good option that would be inexpensive but not too heavy. It is still 90 degrees here in Houston.
I thought I might have a hard time finding watercress but I am very lucky to drive by a Super HMart on my way to and from Aveline's school. It is an amazing store. Cheap produce and an amazing seafood section.
It's a simple soup really cook the onions, celery, and garlic in butter. Then add the potatoes, and enough chicken stock to cover the potatoes. Simmer until the potatoes are tender.
Add the watercress and stir until wilted. Mix in the cream Worcestershire sauce Tabasco and season with salt and pepper.

Blend until smooth. And warm through. I served it with a big piece of whole wheat country bread. Aveline and Colette both loved it and Aveline even dipped her bread in the soup.
Potato-Watercress Soup
New England Soup Factory by Marjorie Druker & Clara Silverstein
Makes 8 to 10 servings

2 tbls butter
1 large Spanish onion peeled and diced
3 ribs celery, diced
3 whole cloves garlic, peeled
5 large Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch chunks
1-2 quarts chicken stock
2 bunches watercress
2 cups light cream
4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
3 dashes Tabasco sauce
kosher salt and black pepper, to taste

In a stockpot melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery, and garlic. Saute for 5 to 7 minutes. Add the potatoes and pour in the chicken stock until the potatoes are submerged. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium high and simmer until potatoes are tender, 30 to 35 minutes.
Remove from the heat and add the watercress. Stir until wilted. Add the cream, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, salt, and pepper. Puree the soup in the pot using a hand blender or working in batches with a regular blender until smooth. Return the pot to medium-high heat and simmer for an additional 3 minutes to warm through.

Aveline's first day of school

Aveline had her first day at The Arbor School on Monday. She was so excited. She got up 4 times the night before, much to the dismay of Robby and I. We have been planning and saving for this school for almost a year so there was a lot of anticipation. We tried to prepare her as much as possible and I guess it worked because early Monday Morning she was up brushing her teeth and wanted to go.
The night before we read Oh, the Places You'll Go! by Dr. Seuss. And it was a fitting and emotional book because Aveline has come so far in her almost 5 years of life. She is working hard, stubborn and determined when she wants to be. I hope that attitude will help her to overcome any difficulties she might have in the future. Keep it up Aveline we all love you!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Friday, September 9, 2011

Funny things about Texas...

They drive fast, could not be more polite, and take even the charcoal at Costco for their weekend burgers way too serious. "Competition" briquets

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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Moved to Houston

We made it. The drive here was long but nice. From Baltimore we drove through West Virginia, across to Kentucky, down through Tennessee, through Arkansas, and down to Houston.
It took us four days, three crappy motels, and lots of yummy food but we made it.
The house we rented is nice. Now it's time to unpack and reassemble all the Ikea furniture (ugh) and then off to Fargo for my Cousin's wedding and to get our girls!

West Viginia had a beautiful welcome center overlooking the valley.

First BBQ of the trip. Better was yet to come.

Never been to Kentucky before.

Hanging out at Woodford Reserve Bourbon distillery while Robby went on a tour.

Still the best fried chicken I have ever had and worth the drive.

He is so detected.

Very interesting state...

We made it to Texas! :). Only five and a half more hours to go :(.

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