Thursday, January 6, 2011

~A recipe is only a theme, which an intelligent cook can play each time with a variation~

What's better than quality time in the kitchen with someone you love? Bill and I created a wonderful soup together to enjoy on a cold and wintery January evening. It was nothing fancy, but it really doesn't take very much to make me happy!

Kale is an item that everyone needs to add to their shopping lists! It's relatively inexpensive, tastes great and  loaded with nutritional benefits.

Our version of  "Kale and Chickpea Soup" from Canadian Living:


1 1/4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2/3 onions, chopped
1- 1/3 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 tsp crumbled dried sage
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 cups sodium-reduced chicken stock or chicken stock, homemade
1 1/3 cups cubed peeled sweet potatoes
1 cup cubed Black Forest ham
2/3 sweet red pepper, chopped
2/3 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 cups chopped kale

In large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat; fry onion, garlic, sage, salt and pepper, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.

Add stock, 3 cups water, potato, ham, red pepper and chickpeas; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until potatoes are tender, 15 minutes.

Add kale; simmer until tender, about 5 minutes. (Make-ahead: Let cool for 30 minutes; refrigerate until cold. Refrigerate in airtight container for up to 3 days.)

Serves 4

**Tweeking the recipe:
-Baby carrots instead of peppers
-No onions, black pepper, or sage, instead we used oregano and thyme for the spices
-Grilled chicken instead of ham