Moroccan Carrot Soup

After all that fun my body decided it was payback time, so I spent most of this week sick with some sort of flu- stomach cramps, body aches, a chest rash (?!). Soup was in order. But not just any soup- it had to be Halloween themed. I may be sick, but I still have my holiday dignity. After some searching I found this recipe. It called to me because I only had to buy yogurt and a lemon for it, two things I knew I could carry home without having to take a whimper break. I wish I'd read the comments on Epicurious first. Many of them suggest adding pumpkin to it, which sounds great. So if anyone does that, please let me know how it turns out.

I like this soup because it wasn't too carrot-y; it had a surprising balance of flavors for how little time and work it took. I highly recommend it. Also, I just used bought ground cumin and it tasted great so feel free to skip that step if you want.

Moroccan Carrot Soup 

Bon Appétit  | April 2010 

2 tablespoons butter 
1 cup chopped white onion
1 pound large carrots, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch dice (about 2 2/3 cups)
2 1/2 cups low-salt chicken broth
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 cup plain yogurt, stirred to loosen

 Melt butter in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté 2 minutes. Mix in carrots. Add broth; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until carrots are very tender, about 20 minutes.

Stir cumin seeds in small skillet over medium-high heat until fragrant, 4 to 5 minutes; cool. Finely grind in spice mill.
Remove soup from heat. Puree in batches in blender until smooth. Return to same pan. Whisk in honey, lemon juice, and allspice. Season with salt and pepper.
Ladle soup into bowls. Drizzle yogurt over; sprinkle generously with cumin.


breakfast burrito

Busy busy busy! I have been so busy lately. How busy, you ask? In the past three weeks I have been to two weddings, Des Moines twice, Iowa City once, and had two (very lovely and awesome and pleasecomebacksoon!) house guests in the weekend between. There have been many meals eaten. Some meals have pictures that go with them. There is a lot of back-log going on here, but we have to start somewhere so let's have a delicious beginning, shall we?

For over a year now I have heard my sister Sarah talk about her boyfriend John's breakfast burritos. Now I have finally tasted them and can vouch that they are, in fact, awesome. On the Sunday of their visit Sarah and I walked to get coffee while John made us burritos. So I really don't have any recipe to give you for this, I mostly just wanted to brag that I got a delicious breakfast and it was in my own kitchen. Sarah's face in the above picture pretty much sums up how you feel while you're eating one of these doozies. Oh, and that salsa? Yeah, that's homemade. You're so jealous.


dijon mac and cheese

I like the part about learning to cook where you start to be able to make up your own recipes. It makes last-minute clean-out-the-fridge meals so much more enjoyable.

Take this meal for example. A year ago it would have fallen into the "no meal" category. I had gotten home around 10 one night, realized I hadn't eaten supper, and so looked in my bare cupboards for things to scrape together.

With shells, milk, cheddar cheese, some flour, red pepper flakes and a dash of dijon mustard at the end I stumbled upon a dish I've actually made again. On purpose. When other ingredients were available. That's what I call a MEAL!

Hooray for progress.



This may be my least cleverly titled blog post, but let's move on. It was a big weekend, leaving me with a lot of sleep to catch up on... eventually. Hopefully.

Popcorn is really delicious. Not the microwave kind so much, but the old fashioned, heated in a heavy pot kind. I've been making it a lot lately and experimenting with seasoning. My favorite so far is with oil and salt (of course), black pepper, dried thyme, and Parmesan. Super yummy.

And yeah, I do love Australia.

Plain Popcorn

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/3 cup popcorn kernels

Heat oil with 3 popcorn kernels in a 3-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, covered, until 1 or 2 kernels pop. Quickly add remaining popcorn, then cook, covered, shaking pan frequently, until kernels stop popping, about 3 minutes.