Thursday, June 30, 2016

Cool & Creamy Vegetable Party Dip

I almost feel silly posting this recipe because it is just so darn simple. But, maybe that's a good thing and even more reason to share it with you. I think we all are constantly on the look-out for quick, no-fuss recipes that we can prepare with simple ingredients and little prep. This is totally one of those recipes. A raw vegetable platter is an ideal dish to take along to parties and it's something healthy that guests can nibble on all throughout the event. This dip, also, is something to keep on hand throughout the week in the fridge to dip fresh veggies into when cravings for a snack hit.

I keep washed, prepped vegetables in the fridge pretty much on a constant basis. I can grab fresh, raw veggies throughout my busy day without having to stop to wash, trim or cut up anything. And, I like some type of a dip alongside. Sometimes it something simple like, some carrots and celery plunged into peanut butter. Other times, my dip of choice is some version of hummus. And, when I'm in the mood for something creamy, I turn to this dip. It's full of flavor and is so much better than any store-bought dip out there.

NOTE: This is, also, fantastic to dollop atop corn or zucchini fritters. And, if you substitute 4 ounces of room temperature cream cheese for half of each amount of the mayo and sour cream, it makes a great spread for crackers or crisp pita.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Smooth and Creamy Potato Soup

I have shared with you a few different potato soup recipes here on the blog. I make many variations like, my Ultimate Loaded Baked Potato Soup, my Sweet Corn, Potato and Sausage Soup with Kale and my Ham and Potato Chowder with Homemade Croutons. And, even though I really have never met a potato soup that I didn't like, there are some that I favor and seem to make time and time again. This recipe is one such recipe. I first began making this soup after seeing a version of it made by Ree Drummond. The smooth, blended aspect of her recipe appealed to me. I think so many of us are used to thick, chunky versions of potato soup. This recipe is just a tad bit different and one that I fell in love with after my first spoonful. It, for some reason, feels lighter than typical potato soup (even though it is finished with cream) and it's a soup that doesn't feel heavy even when eaten during these warmer spring/summer months. It feels almost velvety on the tongue and is just so dang luxurious-tasting.

This recipe is an uncomplicated one, but one that is built upon layers of flavor. Onions, carrots and celery are the vegetable combo that is the soup's foundation. Once diced potatoes are added and simmered in chicken stock, the soup is thickened a bit with a flour and milk mixture. Then, the soup is blended to the smoothness of your preference (I like mine mostly silky-smooth with just a few tiny bits of vegetables remaining). The whole thing is finished with cream and served with the garnishments of your choice.

Note that this soup reheats wonderfully and in my opinion, is even better the next day.

Yields 6 - 8 servings.