Tuesday, March 22, 2011

3-22-2011 Superb Soup & Salad Dinner, and The Christmas Tree Store

I am sitting here right now feeling absolutely stuffed. We just finished a superb dinner which consisted of Turkey Meatball Soup, Garlic and Herb Foccacia Bread, and Shredded Beet and Carrot Salad.
The soup was perfectly hearty, the foccacia bread was the perfect accompaniment, and the salad perfectly rounded off the meal. Here are pictures and recipes:

Turkey Meatball Soup
For the Meatballs:
1 pound ground turkey
1 egg
1/2 C. seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 t. onion powder
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. black pepper
Preheat oven to 350
Mix above ingredients in a medium bowl. Shape into small meatballs. Place on a baking sheet sprayed with non stick cooking spray. Bake for 15 minutes.
For the soup:
1 T. olive oil
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1/2 large onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 zucchini, chopped
10 mushrooms, chopped
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, and oregano
1 can garbanzo beans
1 qt. Chicken Stock
3 C. fresh Spinach, chopped
Cooked Turkey Meatballs
Salt and Pepper, to taste
In a large soup pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the carrot, onion, and celery. Sautee until onion is translucent. Add the mushrooms, zucchini, and garlic, sautee 2 minutes more. Add the diced tomatoes, meatballs, garbanzo beans, and chicken stock. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and lower flame to a simmer 30 minutes. Stir in fresh spinach. Taste to check seasonings, and add salt and pepper to your liking.
Bread Machine Garlic and Herb Foccacia Bread
Do you have a bread machine? I do, and I use it all of the time. I highly recommend getting one. It easily creates the best breads. All you do is put in the ingredient, and out comes perfect dough.
1 C. water
2 T. olive oil
3/4 t. salt
1 heaping teaspoon sugar
2 t. garlic, minced
1 T. rosemary
1/2 t. dried basil
1/2 t. dried oregano
1/4 t. dried thyme
3 C. bread flour
1 packet active dry yeast (2 1/4 t.)
Place the ingredients into the pan of the bread machine in the order listed above, or according to your bread machine's instructions.
Turn on dough cycle.
When dough cycle is finished, preheat oven to 400 degrees.
While oven is heating, spray a 9x13 baking pan with non stick spray. Place dough into pan and using fingers dimple dough and stretch to fill inside. Dimple dough about every inch or so. Brush with 2 T. olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt.
Bake for 20-25 minutes until top is lightly browned.
Once cool, cut into stick and serve with soup.
Shredded Carrot and Beet Salad
1 Romaine heart, chopped
2 handfuls baby spinach
2 large carrot, peeled and grated
1 beet, peeled and grated
1/2 cucumber, partially peeled and sliced
1 tomato, cut into wedges
Dijon Vinaigrette:
1 T. Dijon Mustard
1/8 C. red wine vinegar
1/4 C. olive oil
2 t. sugar
3/4 t. salt, or to taste
1/4 t. pepper
Place the lettuce and spinach in a large bowl. Cover half of the lettuces with shredded beets, and the other half with shredded carrots. Line the edges with the cucumber slices and tomato wedges.
In a jar with a lid, mix together all of the vinaigrette ingredients, shake until emulsified.
Serve vinaigrette on the side of the salad, for each person to pour on their own.
There you have it! A great dinner that is delicious, healthy and well balanced.
Earlier today I decided to venture into the Christmas Tree Store, after I heard my sister raving about it. First of all, the name of this store is very misleading, it is NOT a Christmas store. I was suprised to find a bargain store filled with an amazing selection of just about everything, and they even had a large amount of kosher products.
Here is the display when you first walk inside, it is a little hard to see but it is 3 stands of kosher for Passover candies:
I was overwhelmed (something that rarely happens) as I wandered through this new world in awe. Some of the incredible things I saw were table cloths for $6.99, inepensive kitchen gadgets, unique toys, and cleaning products. When I arrived in the food area, I was ecstatic. There was kosher spices for 89 cents, unique kosher cookies, crackers, nuts, candies, and ohhhh the sauces. Here is a pic of the Joyce Chen Sauces, which I was stunned to find available there:
I had my antsy little one with me, which posed a small problem of time. I plan on returning to the Christmas Tree Store very soon sans kiddos. I can't wait! I just wish they would change the name.
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