Tastebud Party

This weekend did not go as we had planned.  Saturday morning when Elle woke up we realized going to church Saturday night and then spending Sunday in Blue Ridge, Ga apple picking and hiking wasn’t going to happen.

Elle woke up sounding like an 80-year-old smoker.  She was wheezy, and I could barely hear her when she cried or talked.

Since we were summoned home this weekend, I found lots of time to play in the kitchen.  We made waffles, chicken dumpling soup, pumpkin pie lattes, granola, whole wheat bread, pumpkin brownies, and got all the veggies chopped and bagged for a Veggie Curry I’m going to make in the crock pot this week.  I love being creative…..especially in the kitchen.

Sunday, while Mike spent the day working on design projects and Elle slept (practically the whole day….poor baby!), Luke and I made this Chicken and Dumpling Soup and I perfected my whole wheat bread recipe.

The soup was really good but of course, I made several changes.  I used vegetable broth instead of chicken broth because that is what I had.  I make my own vegetable broth once a month in the crock pot then freeze in ice cube trays, pop them out, and bag them.  It sounds kind of complicated but it is really easy.  And is definitely worth the savings of buying pre made broth.  My home made veggie broth cost pennies compared to a box of broth from the store, and it is organic.  I also omitted the parsnip and turnip and added celery and onion instead since that is what was in the fridge.  I would love to try it with the parsnip and turnip sometime but I was trying to watch the grocery budget.  Also, I added some oregano and bay leaf to the soup.

The soup was a nice alternative to chicken and dumplings.  The vegetables added so much flavor and depth to the soup-sweet, creamy butternut squash and chewy, tasty kale.  Yum!  So flavorful and healthy!!

The only change I’d make is the dumplings.  I’ll definitely make it with my dumpling recipe next time.  These dumplings were dense and chewy not biscuit-like or doughy how I usually like my dumplings.  But for 200 calories per bowl, lots of veggies and good real food, I will definitely put this on rotation this fall and winter.  Dude! I LOVE soup!!

I’ve literally been working for 1-2 years to perfect my homemade whole wheat bread recipe, and I think I finally got it this weekend-soft and doughy but still made with 2/3 whole wheat flour.

Whole Wheat Bread

Add the following ingredients to your bread maker in this order!

  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 2 tablespoons buter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 pinch ground ginger
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons raw sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup bread flour
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons of yeast

Turn on the dough cycle of your bread maker.  Then remove dough and place in a loaf pan.  Let rise in a cool oven for 40 minutes.  Then turn on oven to 350 degrees.  And bake bread for 35-40 mins-start time when you preheat.  Yes, keep the bread in while oven is preheating.  I’ve found it helps with the rise.

Luke and I also put together a dessert-Pumpkin Blondies!

Mike said they were the best brownies/blondies/baked square cake good he’s ever had.  They really were amazing.  Moist, chewy and PUMPKIN-my favorite flavor!

I made a few substitutions and changes….I almost didn’t make these because it called for 2 sticks of butter!  Gosh that is a lot but I decided to go for it and enjoy a couple then give the rest of the pan away.  I ended up decreasing the butter to 1 1/2 sticks, substituting raw sugar for the sugar, substituting whole wheat pastry flour for the all purpose flour, subbing 1 cup of butterscotch chips for 1 cup of white chocolate chips, and subbing 1/2 of butterscotch chips for 1/2 cup of chocolate chips.  They were a party for my tastebuds! And we enjoyed them with a side of maple walnut ice cream.

It was the perfect, cozy fall weekend.  Elle is still the same today-wheezy, red eyes, and sleeping a lot-so please say a prayer for her.

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About dennyfamily

Happily Married with 2 Wonderful Children.
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