Friday, November 22, 2013

Light the fire, food fast and a movie.

  This is from a dinner we had a while back and I just never posted it. Jon had the day off and we ran errands and got things done, but it took up most of the day. By the time we returned home it was late in the evening. It was a dark and stormy night, no kidding. Rain, thunder, and lightening, everything I love in a perfect autumn night. Hot creamy soup, you know the comfort kind you would never dream of eating in warmer weather?, and warm bread were just what we wanted. It was already supper time so after a quick assessment of the time I wanted to spend and the ingredients I had on hand, I made my way to the basement and grabbed this little cookbook. 


I do not know how many of these little cookbooklets, is that a word???, I have but they take up nearly two feet of my cookbook shelf area. I have some amazing tried and truly great recipes in those pages. I am not swayed by just any of these, I really have picked and chosen a select few it's just that I have been at it for almost thirty years.  This one was published in, 1998.


   This gem I bought at a yard sale a long time ago. This cookbooklet is a little taller and wider than its more contemporary companions, but has the same quality of recipes in its pages. It was published in 1949.

$50,000.00  winning recipe for the Pillsbury's Grand National Recipe and Baking Contest held at the Waldorf~Astoria Hotel in New York City, December 13, 1949.

   I enjoy vintage recipes so much. While those $50,000.00 Nut Rolls are tremendous, there are equally wonderful recipes in that book. There are recipes that feature ginger such as Danish Ginger Roll, Ginger Tea Bread and Ginger Cake Apple Fluff. Ginger is not something you see as the predominant flavor in baked goods today like it was years ago. Gingerbread and maybe the odd Ginger Snap cookie recipe, but that's pretty much it unless you live in the Britain where Scones and Oaties do get to sport ginger. I love ginger and have made it a part of my baking. The other recipes in this book are very interesting and delicious as well.

Creamy Bacon~Spinach Soup is the entrée for this evening's supper.

   Here is the photo of the recipe for this evening's repast.  Since it may be a little frustrating to work off of the photo I will set it out below in a more workable format. This soup is very good as well as fast and easy to prepare. The next selection from this cookbooklet will be this next week and I am thinking it will be the Creamy Reuben Soup on page 28... yumminess right there!!

Eight simple ingredients. The pre~sliced mushrooms and bottled minced garlic are my version of "fast food".

50% Whole Wheat One~Hour bread ingredients for the bread machine. I would like to make the Whole Wheat dinner rolls dough, let the dough rise and then bake but tonight is food fast so one~hour bread it is.

Bacon cut and sautéing.

Spinach squeezed.

The leftover bacon and mushroom will reappear in an omelet for lunch tomorrow.

Bacon nearly done so mushrooms and garlic added.

Broth added. Only need to whisk flour into milk and stir into soup, stirring until thickened.

Bread done. Cool for ten minutes while I ladle soup and Jon starts the fire... 

...and pops a movie in.

No need for place settings because the fire is going, the movie is in and paused where it begins and it is supper by the fire.

Here are the recipes for both the soup and bread.

Creamy Bacon~Spinach Soup

6   slices bacon, cut into 1~inch pieces
1 1/2   cups sliced fresh mushrooms
1/4    cup chopped onion
1   garlic clove, minced
2 (14.5 oz)   cans ready to serve chicken broth   
1 (9 oz)   package frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed to drain well
1 1/2   cups milk
6   tablespoons all purpose flour

In Dutch over, combine bacon, mushrooms, onion and garlic; cook over medium~high heat until bacon is cooked and vegetables are tender. Drain.

Add broth and spinach; simmer 5 minutes.

In small bowl, combine milk and flour; beat with wire whisk until well blended. Stir flour mixture into soup. Simmer until mixture boils and thickens, stirring constantly.

4 (1 1/2 cup) servings

50% Whole Wheat Bread

12 ounces, 1 1/2 cups   water, 115-125°
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups bread flour
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
2 tablespoons dry milk
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons 

Add ingredients to bread pan in order listed, making well in center of dry ingredients for yeast. Program for one~hour bread setting. Turn on. When done, turn off, unlock pan and remove with oven mitts. Shake bread out and allow to cool on rack before slicing.

   Just a little word here. This will make a two pound loaf so if your machine will not make two pound loaves you could halve the recipe, no promises on outcome though. Do not let the salt and yeast touch, it will kill the yeast. Making that well for the yeast is important. If you are using a one~hour feature the water temperature is crucial; too cold you won’t activate the yeast properly, too hot you will kill it. Either way you will get flat bread and not the nice little round loaves we buy to make wraps and lovely pizza pies. If you are tempted to use 100% Whole Wheat flour you need to use your "Whole Wheat" setting. Whole wheat has the entire wheat kernel which means all of the germ and bran are there. This makes for heavier bread that needs more time to rise. Use exact increments. I am not a stickler for exactness in a recipe, in fact I like to go outside the box and customize recipes. In a bread machine you really are better off sticking with the ingredient list and their increments though.

With a little cheese added the mushrooms and bacon provided a delicious omelet, some leftover bread made great toast.

   I hope you are enjoying your autumn. Autumn is quickly giving way to winter so enjoy every minute of it as we welcome a time for Thanksgiving.

   I am an avid soup fan and would love to see your soup, chowder, bisque, stew and chili recipes. It would be fun to organize a Bloggers baking and or cooking cook book, choose a cause and donate proceeds toward it with the funds. Any takers?

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