Chicken and Wild Rice Soup Recipe from Carolina Reckoning

ricesoupFor brisk autumn days and chilly fall nights.

Makes 3 quarts.

¼ cup butter
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 cups onions
1 cup celery
1 Tbsp minced garlic
2 (8 oz) sliced Baby Bella mushrooms
6 Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp white pepper
½ tsp black pepper
2 quarts chicken broth
4 cups chopped cooked chicken
3 cups cooked wild rice
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp fresh thyme
2 Tbsp sherry
Garnish with thyme.

1. In Dutch oven, heat butter and olive oil till melted and blended.
2. Add onion and celery. Cook 5 minutes.
3. Add garlic. Cook 2 minutes.
4. Add mushrooms. Cook 10 minutes. Stir frequently.
5. Add garlic powder, flour, salt and peppers. Cook 2 minutes. Stir constantly.
6. Add chicken broth. Stir till achieve smooth texture.
7. Bring to simmer, then add chicken and wild rice. Cook 20 minutes.
8. Add cream and thyme. Simmer. Cook for 10 minutes.
9. Stir in sherry. Garnish with thyme.
10. Serve and enjoy.

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Shepherd’s Pie with a Twist Recipe from Carolina Reckoning

Another hearty recipe from Claire’s cupboardsheppie

1 lb. ground beef
1 small onion
¼ cup green pepper
1 can tomato soup
2 cups vegetable (green beans, peas, carrots or corn as desired)
2 cups mashed potatoes
1 cup shredded cheese

1. Brown beef and onion with green pepper.
2. Add salt and black pepper to taste.
3. Stir in tomato soup and vegetable.
4. Put into a 2-quart casserole and top with potatoes, then cheese.
5. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Great recipe to use leftover vegetables and potatoes.

The twist? Claire’s decorative touches—parsley or chives garnish.

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A Southern Christmas—Spicy Cheese Straws

8 oz. Extra Sharp Cheese
1 ½ stick margarine—softened
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. cayenne red pepperSpicy Cheese Straws

1. Grate cheese into large bowl.
2. Sift flour into another large bowl.
3. Measure flour again and sift once more with 1 tsp of cayenne.
4. Mix cheese and flour by hand.
5. Using a spatula, stir in softened margarine until of consistency to press out with cookie press.
6. Score before baking. My cookie press has an attachment that produces a “straw effect.”
7. Bake at 350 degrees until bottom is browned—about 20 minutes.

Hope you enjoy the recipe. Let me know how you like it.

Getting Ready for Thanksgiving

When my children were small I would often hand them child scissors, construction paper, glue and a JC Penney catalog to make a Thanksgiving Book on that Wednesday before the holiday. I instructed them to cut out pictures of anything they were thankful for. A codicil—learned the hard way—prohibited them from including pictures of things they didn’t have—preventing this from turning into a Christmas wish list.  I was always immensely flattered at the beautiful, bone skinny models they chose to represent me. As if . . .

My children obviously have a flair for fiction, too. Continue reading