Saturday, November 15, 2014

Pinterest Review: Ham and Potato Soup

Last Thanksgiving we had a bunch of turkey, potatoes, onion, and celery left over.  I was looking for a recipe that I could use up those ingredients with.  I came across a Ham and Potato Soup pin, which looked perfect.  Okay, soup it is!

Ham and Potato Soup

(About 8 servings)
  • 3 and 1/2 cups potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1/3 cup celery, diced
  • 1/3 cup onion, diced
  • 7 ounces cooked ham, diced
  • 3 and 1/4 cups water
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups 2% milk
  1. In a large pot, combine the diced potatoes, celery, onion, ham, and water, and bring it to a boil.
  2. Reduce the heat to Medium and cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
  3. Stir in the chicken broth, salt, and pepper.
  4. In a saucepan, over Medium heat, melt the butter.
  5. Whisk in the flour, stirring constantly, until it’s thick.
  6. Slowly stir in the milk and stir constantly until it has gotten slightly thick again.
  7. Stir the milk mixture into the pot of soup and cook it until it’s heated through.
Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator.

Now, obviously this was just a jumping-off point for me.  I used turkey, not ham.  And to be honest, I really don't think that I measured much of anything.

Here's the thing about this recipe - it doesn't call for any seasonings/spices!  That just resulted in all kinds of question marks on my face because, well, it didn't taste.  So I pulled out some seasonings and started adding.  I don't know exactly what all I added, but there was some red chili powder, some garlic bread powder, and possibly some Lowery's Seasoned Salt.

I am keeping this recipe, despite the lack of seasoning, because it gives me a good base and then I just add seasonings to taste.  I will make it again when I have the ingredients on hand, perhaps this Thanksgiving?

Monday, November 3, 2014

Still actively blogging, but on my other blog....

Hi!  I've made a decision that I'm going to start putting most of my blog posts over on my other blog

The reason is that I often have something non-Alaskan to blog about, but no pictures, or Alaskan pictures, but not a lot to write.  So, I'm just gonna mash it all together over there.  You might end up getting a picture of snow-covered trees on a post reviewing a book (hint hint), or a cooking update and weather update all together.  And for those of you who have been checking both blogs, this will maybe help you out!  Less work on your end!  See I'm really just doing this for you...

So I'd love for you to join me over at 

See ya over there!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Vintage Photo Friday - Halloween

This is from about 1980 or 81.

I was a hobo.  I think.

As you can see, Tina got a store-bought costume (that I remember being VERY jealous of), and Mom just kinda put a coat, hat, and sunglasses on me, painted a beard with mascara, and called it a day.  I do not look amused.


But the thing with these vintage photos is that you can learn so much more by looking beyond the intended subject.  For example:

  • Top shelf behind us you can see the 8-track tape collection.  I think Mom & Dad might still have these.
  • To the left of the 8-tracks, you can see the globe book-end.  I remember these.  They were not necessarily geographically correct.
  • There's also what looks to be 3 sets of encyclopedias.  I only remember one of those sets of books.  The white with blue are children's story books.
I think that my favorite costume I ever had was the year that I dressed up as Dolly Parton (I was an adult).  I used a flannel shirt, added fringe, had a blond wig and fake eyelashes.  It was the best.  And even if I knew where my photos were, I'm not sure I would share a picture of that with you...

What's your favorite costume from your past?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

(pseudo) Pinterest Review: Hawaiian Meatballs

Last time we were in town, I bought a bag of frozen meatballs.  Because, you know, easy dinner.  That's a Plus.  The one and only time I ever tried to make meatballs was a total failure that ended up being a yummy ground beef dish (but not meatballs).

I started with this recipe that I found on Pinterest that called for mixing barbecue sauce with pineapple.  Well, a lot of times, that's all I need, an idea - a starting point.

So I grabbed out the barbecue sauce, a can of pineapple tidbits, the last small piece of green pepper we had, the partial onion from the fridge.  Threw all that together, onto the stove in a pan, and added the meatballs.  As I let it simmer, I checked the flavors and added some of the pineapple liquid to it.  I made rice with some green pepper, using chicken broth as the liquid.

Jeff loved it!  For myself, I would make some tweeks.  I would probably start with a tomato sauce base and get to Hawaiian barbecue from there.  Plus I would add in large chunks of pepper and onion, instead of the little bitty pieces I cut.  That way there would maybe be some crunch to the dish.  Plus, I don't think the rice was right.  Maybe it was the time where I really should have just used water to make the rice.

But even though it wasn't all that I had dreamed of (because I had been thinking about that recipe for a week or two), Jeff loved it and I will make it again, with the tweeks.

What's been on your menu lately?