Jalapeno Beer Cheese Soup

Jalapeno Beer Cheese Soup

Today is Christmas Eve! I hope everyone has all their Christmas shopping done and presents wrapped.  I’m still behind on my gift wrapping.  My last few presents came via delivery yesterday so I’ll be wrapping today  —yay!

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Turkey Stuffed Cabbage Soup

Turkey Stuffed Cabbage Soup

The temperature lately has been extremely chilly! Chris and I are constantly wearing our sweaters and jackets inside the house with the heater on.  Yep, it’s that cold! Some nights, the temperature even dropped below freezing.  We lost a few of our hibiscus plants because of it (I think! We don’t exactly have green thumbs).  I’m hoping our citrus trees will survive through the winter.

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Oxtail Congee (Porridge)

Oxtail Congee (Porridge)

Oxtail soup has always been a favorite of mine.  I didn’t grow up on it but I eat it often enough, as if I did.  My sister made this dish for me years ago and ever since I always make it a point to cook it whenever Chris or I are sick with a cold/flu or when it’s cold out.  It’s not a heavy or chunky soup, it’s a brothy soup with a ton of flavors.  I always make a big pot of it but having it day after day can get boring and tedious.

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Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Roasted Red Pepper Soup

My mother-in-law’s visit was super brief! I thought we were going to spend the entire day together.  It turned out, we only spent lunch and dinner together eating out.  During the in-between time, she jetted off to sightsee with her fiancé.  On the way to the city, they saw traffic on the Bay Bridge.  The traffic in the city was so bad that they couldn’t make it to the Golden Gate Bridge so they turned back around.  Bummer!

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Potato Leek Soup with Dill and Bacon

Potato Leek Soup with Dill and Bacon

After a long weekend of eating out, I was relieved to be back in my kitchen cooking my own meals.  I don’t know what it is but it’s really hard for me to constantly be eating out.  I love the idea, but the food just tasted utterly heavy and it weighed me down.  Not to mention how overly and heavily seasoned some of the meals are, I felt disgusted after eating!

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Sausage and Cannellini Bean Minestrone

Sausage and Cannellini Bean Minestrone

I’m starting to come around when it comes to Minestrone soups.  I’ve made this version several times with wonderful results.  The original recipe calls for ground beef but you can substitute with sweet Italian sausage, which is what I have done here.  Or spicy Italian sausage if you prefer your soup with a kick.  My butcher carries a variety of sausages; turkey, chicken and even Chorizo.  If you don’t care for sausages, pancetta would work well too.  I like to pair my soups with grilled cheese sandwiches or Panini.  Although garlic bread or any homemade savory bread would be delicious.

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Winter Minestrone

Winter Minestrone

I wasn’t big on minestrone soups before only because most of them are thin and there isn’t a whole lot of anything in the soup.  This recipe however, changed my feelings towards minestrone soups.  One of my favorite recipes —this soup is hearty and has loads of veggies.  The pancetta in here is a nice touch to this soup.  Perfect on a cold night.  I served it with grilled ham and cheese sandwich —it really hits the spot!

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Oxtail Soup

It has been quite chilly here the past few days.  So chilly that a pot of soup was in order.  I love this soup.  I remember having it at a friend’s house for dinner when I was 10 years old.  And in my early 20’s, I learned this recipe from Kimi.  I remember one time I made this soup and E added a dried bay leaf to it —it threw this entire soup off and not in a good way.  Suffice it to say it went into the trash.  If you want to alter this soup in any way —please do not add a bay leaf in here.  The flavor of this soup comes from the oxtail and the veggies.  There’s no need for any herbs or spices.  Bottoms up!

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Chinese Pork Sparerib and Daikon Soup

Chinese Pork Sparerib and Daikon Soup

I got this recipe from Kimi.  I enjoy it whenever the weather is a bit cool and I’m in a brothy soup kind of mood (usually when I’m feeling a cold coming on).  Chris doesn’t care for it.  He doesn’t like the smell of daikon but he’ll eat turnip cake —weird! Whenever I make this soup, I always make it for one.

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Roasted Heirloom Tomato Soup

Roasted Heirloom Tomato Soup

Kimi came over for dinner last night.  And to make things easy for myself in the kitchen, I made a pot of soup and sandwiches as our meal.  I saw some nicely ripe heirloom tomatoes at the market so I decided to make roasted heirloom tomato soup and turkey cheese sandwich with fig chutney.  The sandwich was a nice dunker for my soup.

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