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Monday, November 7, 2016

Candied Jalapenos

So, what do you do when you "over-purchase" hot peppers at the Farmer's Market ? You make candied jalapenos ! I honestly have never tried these; however, I am now a huge fan. I have always loved the combination of sweet and spicy, but this takes it to a new level. The side bonus is 3 small jars of the sweet syrup, infused with peppers, which will make an amazing glaze for some Cornish game hens I have in the freezer !

These are so easy, and are great with cheese and crackers, or incorporated into a sandwich, salad or snack !

Candied Jalapenos
3 pounds red and green jalapenos, sliced
2 cups apple cider vinegar
6 cups sugar
1 teaspoon turmeric
2 teaspoons hot chili powder
3 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons celery salt

In a large stock pot, mix together vinegar, sugar and spices. Bring to a boil, then simmer on low for 10 minutes. Stir in sliced peppers, and cook for 5 minutes.

In the meantime, start your canner with boiling water, and reserve 10 half pint jars. Bring water to a boil, and boil jars for 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, place peppers in sterilized jars. Bring remaining syrup to a boil, and boil for 5 minutes. Pour hot syrup over peppers up to 1/4 inch from the top of the jars. Process in a water bath canner for 10 minutes, then cool and store. Any extra "syrup" can be canned along side the peppers, and used for glaze for meats.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Potato Leek Soup

I really love this soup. It's fairly simple to make, is vegetarian, and dairy free, so easy to share with people and not worry about dietary issues.

The first time I had potato leek soups was many years ago in Ireland. Before that, potato soup for me was chunky, creamy, with bacon, maybe carrots. So, when we were served this at a dinner, I was blown away ! It still tastes creamy, warm and comforting, but was different than anything I had ever had.

This recipe makes a large batch, but freezes well, so save some for later, or share the love !

Potato Leek Soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 large leeks, thinly sliced and washed thoroughly (I try to choose those with the largest white portion)
5 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
8 cups vegetable stock
4 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and diced
2 teaspoons Vegeta (this is a salt/spice mixture available online or in ethnic food stores)
2 teaspoons pepper (or to taste)

In a large Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add leeks and garlic and saute until soft. Pour in vegetable stock, then slowly add potatoes, to prevent splashing. Bring to a boil, then simmer over low heat until potatoes are soft enough to be blended.

Using a blender or immersion mixer, puree the soup until smooth. Stir in spices, then let simmer for 10-15 minutes, tasting for seasoning. Serve hot with bread or toasted bread crumbs on top, for texture.