I’m trying to “broaden my horizons,” “tantalize the taste buds,” “teach this (not so old) dog a new trick,” by trying new recipes. I’ve been “stuck in a rut” too long. Little by little over the past 2 years, I have tried this and that…some successful, and some not. Last night I tried my hand at making Irish Soda Bread, and a very hearty vegetable soup…doesn’t that sound like an oxymoron? A hearty vegetable soup? My husband was skeptical, but willing which is not common when it comes to vegetables, especially when I started adding more veggies than what was in the original bagged of dried, milled veggies. The difference here is that HE picked the milled vegetable soup mix…what’s a milled vegetable soup mix?…well…keep reading!!
In March we took a trek up to Milwaukie…that’s Milwaukie, Oregon…to this little place…
This is the home of Bob’s Red Mill
….if you are at all interested in cooking things you have never even dreamed of, this is the place to go!! There are so many milled flours, milled dried beans and vegetables, milled nuts, milled…..everything! All the products are milled, right in Milwaukie, and the cafe / store is just a few blocks away (5000 SE International Way – Milwaukie, OR, 97222.) Your imagination can go CRAZY at Bob’s!! BTW, when I say milled….I’m talking the old way…with a milling stone, using rustic, whole grains!! You can also find their products in some grocery stores. Hey, seriously, I don’t get anything from plugging their great products…I’m just finding a world of wonderfulness…and I’M EXCITED!!
So what we came away with was a couple of flours, dried beans, nuts, and a vegetable soup mix (only includes the milled veggies, and grains – all spices, etc. are yours to add.)
This soup was incredibly hearty, and wonderful on our cold, rainy night.
Tony thought that this kind of vegetable soup looked good, because there was no sign of any fresh cut vegetables…little did he know that I had other plans..heh heh heh. As it cooks, the soup has the consistency of like a good hearty split pea soup. With Tony cringing, I added the fresh carrots, celery, onions, garlic, spinach and green beans, but I promised I would put it all in the blender and serve it in the fashion he was used to in the Spanish / French Basque kitchen of his childhood. My added ingredients also included chicken broth, salt, Creole spices, and thyme. It was really yummy, and the milled whole grains withing the dried contents was a surprisingly happy, chewy surprise!!
The Irish Soda Bread recipe also came in a freshly milled package of whole grain flours, and all necessary dried ingredients. I added water, oil, and egg.
It was so fun to take these grains and make them bread.
I mixed this up using my hands….fun!
Such a pretty little round!
Into the pie dish…
Traditionally, you cut a cross into the bread dough before baking.
Traditionally, cutting the cross into the bread dough was a way of blessing the bread, and then after it cooked….
All warm and crusty!!
…it gave a means for the symbolic breaking of the bread at the dinner table.
Such a hearty soup, and a very dense bread…this meal will keep you warm all night, and the only meat product is in the chicken broth.
What I can say is that this combo was really, really hearty, warm, and satisfying on our cold, rainy, spring night…even the hubby thought so!! The best thing of all…Tony ate all of his vegetables!!
Love, love, love this place!!