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I am a simple country girl who loves life and lives it to the fullest. I cook for one of the greatest families ever. Cooking is my passion and I consider it as well to be my gift.

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Saturday, August 11, 2012


When the cool Fall weather starts rolling back in, my mind turns to the warming nourishment of a pretty pottery bowl, brimming with a heart-warming soup. The possibilities are infinitely endless. The only kitchen utensils you need are a sharp chef's knife, a big heavy bottomed pot and a large wooden spoon. Following are four of my own personal favorites....nothing to complicated....and all delicious and soul-satisfying. Enjoy!

"Do you have a kinder, more adaptable friend in the food world than soup? Who soothes you when you are ill? Who refuses to leave you when you are impoverished and stretches it's resources to give you a hearty sustenance and cheer? Who warms you in the winter and cools you in the summer? Yet who is also capable of doing honor to your richest table and impressing your most demanding guests?...Soup does its loyal best, no matter what undignified conditions are imposed upon it. But soup knows the difference. Soup is sensitive. You don't catch steak hanging around when you're poor and sick, do you?"~Judith Martin

1 cup of chopped onion
2 tablespoons butter
20 oz. chicken or vegetable stock
1 16oz. can cooked, mashed pumpkin
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground ginger
1/8 tsp. ground pepper
1 cup whipping cream, evaporated milk or half-and-half
Saute onion in butter in a medium saucepan until tender. Add 10oz. chicken stock; stir well. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.
Pour broth mixture into container of electric blender and process until smooth. Return mixture to saucepan. Add remaining 10oz. chicken broth, pumpkin, salt, cinnamon, ginger and pepper; stir well. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in cream and cook until thoroughly heated (do not boil). Ladle into individual soup bowls. 6 cups. Top each serving with:
3 tablespoons butter, softened
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 slices whole wheat bread
Combine butter, brown sugar and cinnamon; stir well. Spread butter mixture evenly over one side of bread slices. Place bread, buttered side up on a baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until bread is crisp and topping is bubbly. Cut each slice of bread into 8 small triangles or squares. 32 croutons

"The bishop smiled approvingly. A soup like this is not the work of one man, he said, it is the result of a constantly refined tradition. There are nearly a thousand years of history in this soup.~Willa Cather

1 large onion
3 large ribs of celery
3 medium carrots
3 1/2 lbs. organic chicken
3 quarts water
1 cup long grain brown rice
1/3 cup packed fresh flat-leafed parsley leaves
1 teaspoon salt
Coarsely chop onion, celery and carrots crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices. Remove the giblets from the chicken and reserve for another use.
In a 5qt. heavy pot combine all ingredients and bring to a boil. Simmer soup, covered, 1 hour, and if necessary skim fat. Transfer chicken to a colander and when cool enough to handle discard skin and bones. Coarsely shred meat and return to soup. Season soup with salt and pepper and reheat if necessary. Makes 4 quarts. Serves 6 to 8
COOKS NOTE: The grains from the rice expand and become fluffy while the starch thickens the soup and gives it body, resulting in an extra-comforting take on this perennial cure-all.

"Imagine if you can what the rest of the evening was like. How they crouched by the fire which blazed and leaped and made much of itself in the little grate. How they removed the corners of the dishes, and found rich, hot savory soup, which was a meal in itself, and sandwiches and toast and muffins enough for both of them.~Frances Hodgson Burnett

1 lb. ground beef
1 15oz. can each of corn, green beans, Ranch or Chili beans, pintos and stewed tomatoes
1 12oz. can beer
1 10oz. can diced tomatoes and green chiles
1 packet of Taco seasoning mix
1 packet of Ranch dressing mix
5 (6-inch) corn tortillas
sea salt
Brown beef in large soup pot, stirring until it crumbles and is no longer pink; drain. Return beef to pot.
Rinse and drain corn, green beans and pintos; stir into beef. Stir in Ranch beans, stewed tomatoes, beer, tomatoes with green chiles, taco seasoning and Ranch dressing mix. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Cut tortillas into 1/4-inch strips, place on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with sea salt. Bake at 400 degrees for 5 to 8 minutes. Ladle soup into bowls and top with tortilla strips. Makes 10 cups.

"The best kind of onion soup is the simplest kind."~Ambrose Bierce

4 tablespoons butter
6 cups thinly sliced sweet onions
2 tablespoons flour
6 cups beef broth
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
3 tablespoons brandy
6 slices French bread-toasted
6 slices Gruyere cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Melt butter in large soup pot. Add onions and saute over medium heat until lightly browned, add flour and blend well. Stir in beef broth, wine, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add brandy.


  1. How about your potato soup receipe? I will always remember boyd coffey loving your potato soup.
    Love u, robbin

  2. Yeah, he did love it and I loved making it for him. We still miss him everyday! Love you girl. and thanks for stopping by.