This past weekend I enjoyed celebrating 2010 with my best friends. Great time, great food. By coincidence, we ended up following one of my food & lifestyle trends for this year, Communal Entertaining. I made my chick pea, smoked ham and chevre pizza, appetizer. Dishes made by my friends were braised short ribs, spaetzle, swiss chard (greens for wealth), black eye peas (for good luck), and the best chocolate chip and peanut butter cookies of the new year! The Prosecco and cabernet flowed. Knowing I was in for a party night, I increased my workout earlier in the day to allow for all my communal entertaining- so to speak.
The start of the New Year has many people making resolutions, only to break them shortly thereafter. Myself, I'd rather not put so much emphasis on one day a year, I try to maintain a balanced lifestyle year round. But, if you need to make a lifestyle adjustment, what better time to motivate yourself than the New Year.
Here is another very easy way to get you jump started this year. How about with soup? Here’s a quick and tasty one to try, especially this time of year. I start off the week with a soup on the menu for Mondays. Soup is very nourishing, filling and comforting.
Baked Potato Soup
Makes four servings
2 large baked potatoes, cooled and chopped
4 Tablespoons pancetta (or bacon), chopped
1/2 cup sweet onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
6 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 cup sour cream
2 green onions, chopped
chopped chives, to taste
hot sauce, to taste
In a large soup pot cook the pancetta until light brown. Add onion, green onion, garlic and cook 2-3 minutes or just until onions soften. Add potatoes and broth. Increase temperature, bring soup up to a boil, and then lower to a gentle simmer for 30 minutes. Just before serving, gently stir in cheese and sour cream. Serve topped with chives and hot sauce to taste.
Note: Sour cream should be room temperature and slowly added to avoid curdling.
image: Potato Council