Wednesday, March 14, 2012

hungarian mushroom soup

I've learned a lot in the past 5 weeks of Pebbles' life.  For instance, babies make a lot of noise when they sleep.  I knew they were loud when they cried, but I never expected all of the heavy breathing, grunting, and sighing that they do at night.  Who knew?  Another thing I learned last night - it doesn't matter how calm your child is...the minute you start to make risotto, they will cry. :)

I'm still getting adjusted to parenthood and unpacking my new home on top of that!  I look forward to getting my kitchen situated and getting back to cooking.  In the meantime, a lovely friend of mine has jumped on the guest post train...say hello to Lindsay!  She's got a great soup to share today and more great recipes to come in the future.

Hello all! My name is Lindsay and I am a graduate student just like Kristin. I started cooking and baking the first moment I lived in an apartment with a kitchen and haven't looked back since! If asked, I always say "I like to cook, but I love to bake", but I recognize that we can't live on sweets alone (although I'd certainly like to try). I created my blog a little ways back as a way to improve my cooking skills and force myself to expand my cooking horizons. It's also such a great way to learn tips from other people and find new recipes! Since the whole purpose of these posts is to cover for Kristin while she and Pebbles recover and bond, I thought I'd stick with that trend and share a few super quick, easy and delicious recipes you can whip up when life has you on the run!

Hope you enjoy my recipes and don't forget to visit me at my blog Young Scholar's Life (

I was totally blown away by this soup, which came as a surprise to me, because I hate cooked mushrooms. Turns out, I just hate the texture but love the taste. Initially it calls for the mushrooms to stay in slices, but when I mentioned I don't like the texture, a family member suggested we blend it. Totally genius. I actually think it's way better blended anyway. Definitely give it a try. The recipe is super easy and fast and is amazing heated up the next day for lunch.

Hungarian Mushroom Soup

16 ounces sliced mushrooms
2 cups onions, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 cup 2% milk
2 teaspoons dill weed
1 tablespoon Hungarian paprika (the sweet kind)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups chicken broth or stock
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/4 parsley, chopped
fresh group pepper to taste
1/2 cup sour cream

1. First I started by melting the butter and then I added the flour and cooked for a few minutes until nice and fragrant. Then I added the milk and stirred occasionally.

2. Meanwhile, I sauted the onions in some olive oil until nice and tender. Then I added mushrooms, paprika, and dill weed. I cooked the mushrooms for several minutes until nice and browned.

3. I cooked the milk and butter combination until nice and super thick.

4. Once the mushrooms were a little browned, I added half a cup of broth and the soy sauce and cooked until nice and soft.

5. After the mushrooms softened completely, I added them to the flour mixture. Then I added the rest of the broth and lemon juice and brought the soup up to a simmer.

6. Using a blending thing (I think they are intended for salad dressing but work great here) I liquefied the soup. Note, if you aren't using a deep pot, be careful, I sprayed myself the first time I turned it on. Oops.

7. Then I added the sour cream and stirred until smooth.

8. I sprinkled some parsley on top and enjoyed with my last chunk of no-knead peasant bread. So unbelievably scrumptious!

Friday, March 2, 2012

sulawesi coconut chicken with indonesian salad

I'm excited to feature another guest blogger, this time from Australia!  I'm loving all of the international cuisine that has been featured here lately.  This is another one that looks like an absolute winner.

Hello. I’m Sas from sunny Perth, Australia and I’m thrilled to be invited to write a guest blog for Kristin. I’m a software developer with a passion for cooking. I have a food blog called Eat Cook Code where I share my culinary adventures - cooking for my family and friends. My blog has a range of different recipes, including some that are gluten free and some that are very Australian.

If you look on the map, you’ll see that Perth is very close to South East Asia so much of our food has influences from that region. We’re actually closer to Indonesia than we are to the other side of Australia. Sydney is 4 or 4 1/2 hours by plane and their timezone is 2 or 3 hours ahead of us, depending on the time of the year. Bali is just 3 1/2 hours by plane, in the same timezone and is a lovely place for us to holiday.

I really like cooking Indonesian food. I also love this book.

A friend bought it for me after we went to Bali together. So I thought I’d share my version of a favourite dish from Indonesia – Sulawesi coconut chicken with Indonesian salad.

For 4 people, you'll need 8 chicken thighs and a spice paste made from:

2 thick stalks lemongrass, finely chopped
3 tablespoons ginger, finely chopped
1 teaspoon ground turmeric (or finely chopped fresh if you can get it)
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 medium sized brown onion finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper

Mash these ingredients together with a mortar and pestle until they look like this. The turmeric adds a bright yellow tint.

 The paste is pretty chunky. I didn't put TOO much effort into mashing up the ingredients!

If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, you can use a food processor but don’t make the mixture too fine.

Spread the paste over the chicken thighs and place the container in the fridge for an hour.


You don't need to cover the chicken completely. The flavours are just getting to know each other at this stage!

After an hour, turn on the wok and add a large tin of coconut milk (400ml). Don’t use coconut cream as it will be too thick.

When the coconut milk is hot, add the chicken thighs. You don't need to mix it up too much. When the mixture simmers, the paste will combine beautifully with the milk.

While the chicken simmers, toast half a cup of dessicated coconut in a dry frying pan until it turns golden brown.

 Check the chicken after about 30 minutes. It should look like this.

The mixture will thicken up a little and turn a bright yellow colour. Now it's time for the toasted coconut.

Add the coconut and stir it in. You will end up with a thick sauce coating the chicken thighs.

 The chicken is ready to eat!

You can serve this chicken with an Indonesian salad. Basically, you can blanch any vegetables and pour over a dressing made with the following ingredients.

1 tablespoon palm sugar (jaggery), grated (you can substitute brown sugar)
1 teaspoon fish sauce
2 tablespoon white vinegar
1 tablespoon water
2 small red chilli, finely chopped

Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl.

 I blanched some broccoli and zucchini. You can also use carrots, green beans or cauliflower.

Serve the chicken with the salad and, optionally, some steamed rice.

As you can see, I had mine without the rice and it was delicious. I hope you like it too.

Selamat makan (which is Indonesian for bon app├ętit)!

Please drop by and visit my blog for more of my recipes. Post a comment to say hello – I always love to hear from other foodies!

Eat Cook Code
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