Hot Winter Meals!

Photo 86--Sun and Palm Trees

It’s a particularly chilly morning here in Portland, Maine this morning, so I’m inspired to share some heat! One of my friends just got back from Puerto Rico. Another is going to South Carolina this weekend. For those of us in a chilly place, I offer the photo above. It will have to do for today. And I have three great meals for you to play with this week that will really warm you up! Soups, stews, and chilis always warm me up from the inside out. Enjoy!

Hearty Beef Stew

• 10 cups water
• 2 pounds stew meat
• 1 yellow onion, chopped
• 8 carrots, trimmed and chopped
• 8 stalks celery, trimmed and chopped
• 3 potatoes, chopped
• 2 cloves garlic, diced
• 1 ½ tsp. black pepper
• 1 ½ tsp. salt
• 2 bay leaves

1. Place all of the ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on low for eight hours, stirring once or twice.

Lentil Soup

• 10 cups water
• 1 onion, chopped
• 2 carrots, chopped
• 2 stalks celery, chopped
• 1 can (15 ounces) diced tomatoes
• 1 cup lentils
• 2 Tbsp. olive oil
• 2 cloves garlic, diced
• 2 Tbsp. thyme leaves, diced (or dried thyme)
• 1 Tbsp. black pepper
• 2 Tbsp. salt

1. Heat the oil in a stockpot.
2. Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, black pepper, and salt and cook the vegetables over medium heat until they are soft, about five minutes
3. Add the can of diced tomatoes and cook it over low heat the mixture until the tomatoes begin to break down, about 10 minutes.
4. Add the lentils and the water and stir the mixture.
5. Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover it and cook it over low heat until the lentils are soft, about 30 minutes.

Winter Vegetable and Fish Soup

• 2 cans (15 ounces) vegetable broth
• 1 Tbsp. olive oil
• 1 leek, chopped
• 1 cup broccoli, chopped
• 1 zucchini, diced
• 1 pound halibut or cod fillets, cut into bite size pieces
• 1 cup baby spinach
• 1/8 tsp. ground black pepper
• 1 tsp. oregano leaves, diced (or dried oregano)

1. Heat the oil in the stockpot.
2. Add the leek and sauté for two minutes.
3. Add the vegetable broth and bring the mixture to a boil.
4. Add the broccoli and zucchini cook the mixture over low heat for three minutes.
5. Add the fish and cook the mixture over low heat until the fish turns opaque, about three more minutes.
6. Add the spinach, black pepper, and oregano and cook the mixture over low heat for two more minutes.



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