Tuesday, February 13, 2007

A Recipe to Enjoy...

About a week ago, I mentioned a wonderful potato/sausage soup that Mama concocted, and there were a couple of requests for the recipe! I have attempted to create a proper "recipe" from what she did...hopefully it makes sense. Hope you like it!
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Creamy Peasant Potage

2 strips bacon, cut into pieces
2 bratwurst, casings removed, sliced
6 mushrooms (6 ish...however many you want!), diced
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
5 med. potatoes, peeled, quartered, and sliced
1 can of evaporated milk
1/4 cup cold water
2 tablespoons cornstarch
chicken broth or bouillon
a little olive oil

Begin by rendering the bacon down a bit in your soup pan to let out some of the juices of the bacon. Add the bratwurst, onion, mushrooms and garlic. Slowly saute these together in the pan to caramelize...a low heat would be best, because you want to avoid burning! (When Mama made this here at my house, we let them caramelize together for at least half an hour to forty minutes.) You can add a bit of olive oil here if there aren't enough bacon juices to keep the ingredients from sticking while they caramelize.

While that is sauteing, in a separate pan boil the potatoes in a pan with just enough broth (or pure water & chicken bouillon...not too heavy on the bouillon) to cover, until tender. Add to the meat, onion, garlic & mushroom mixture. Add the evaporated milk. In a bowl or glass measuring cup mix together the 1/4 cup of cold water and 2 tablespoons of cornstarch. Add to the soup. Simmer until thickened, making sure that it doesn't stick. Enjoy!

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The Best Toast

Alright, I know it sounds silly to put a recipe in here for toast, of all things. But I assure you that this way produces an exceptionally good toast! Mama showed me how she does it last Tuesday when she was here as well, and my man and I had it with our "Creamy Peasant Potage" :).

Anyway...what she did was take a loaf of stale french bread, and cut thick slices off of it by poking a large fork into it all the way around the loaf where she would have made the slice with her knife, and then pulled the slice off with her fingers. You know how you split an English muffin to put it in the toaster? It's like that. So the slice that you get isn't perfectly smooth on the side...it's kind of rough, and there's little "mountains and valleys" made out of the bread :). Then you just put those slices on a baking sheet and broil them for about five minutes. Watch them, because you'll want to take them out as soon as they get goldeny and almost brown on the peaks and crispy on the outside. Then spread them with butter and serve with your potage! It is delicious made this way...just like where you would read about in books where they put their bread on toasting forks and toast it in front of the fire.

~*~ "When the girl returned, some hours later, she carried a tray, with a cup of fragrant tea steaming on it; and a plate piled up with very hot buttered toast, cut thick, very brown on both sides, with the butter running through the holes in it in great golden drops, like honey from the honeycomb. The smell of that buttered toast simply talked to Toad, and with no uncertain voice; talked of warm kitchens, of breakfasts on bright frosty mornings, of cosy parlour firesides on winter evenings, when one's ramble was over and slippered feet were propped on the fender; of the purring of contented cats, and the twitter of sleepy canaries." ~*~
~from The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame


Emma Barnhart said...

Thank you, Katya!! Tell me, for the potage - if I have another somersausage/kielbasa-ish meat, can I try that? We don't have actual bratwursts here... OH! And, any good subsitute for evaporated milk? We don't have that or powdered milk here. Grrr.... love to you and your man. And your mama too, and...and...and...

Katya said...

I would use either of those sausages in there. I almost used a sausage-jerky stick from the butcher shop ;). And the evaporated milk...I use evaporated milk almost interchangably with cream or whole milk in my recipes...like in a white sauce or a potato soup ('cause sometimes I don't have it either!). I suppose then you'd just want to watch to see if it needs a little bit more or less thickener if you do that. How's that for an un-scientific answer? That's just what I would do...I am always calling up Mama to see if such-and-such a substitute will work in a recipe! The thing about soup is that it doesn't have to be exactly like the recipe to turn out well. As long as you follow the basic "laws" of what goes well with what, you can use your imagination and be a bit more artistic with it. Hope it works for you. Luv u, Auntie Em!

Katya said...

p.s. Did you see that I was able to make a "list" on the blog for recipes, just like you said? It should work very well! Thank you for suggesting it!

Anonymous said...

Hey we were by to see the boat and sb thought you might have posted some pic so we checked. Any way I saw the recipe and thought it looked yummy. maybe we'll try it some time :) VB