Tasty Tuesday at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam
Tempt My Tummy Tuesday at Blessed with Grace
Today was really kind of cold and damp so it was the perfect day to rummage through the cupboards and the freezer for "soup-er" inspiration. This is what I came up with: Autumn Harvest Soup and Homemade Flax Seed Bread with Cinnamon Honey Butter!
Isn't it pretty?
Here is the base recipe that I wrote down and added to my recipe collection. I made note of extras or substitutions that I used today.
Autumn Harvest Soup
1 pound mixed split peas (I only had 12 oz but, it was close enough.)
1/3 c. pearl barley (not instant)
1 lb. bacon (I had 1/2 pound of bacon and 1/2 pound venison sausage that I had browned and frozen.)
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves minced garlic
1 tsp dried marjoram
6 carrots, diced
4 sticks celery, diced
1 sweet potato, cubed
1 lg. ham bone
1 bay leaf
14 cups water
Kosher salt and Pepper to taste (I did not add pepper because my sausage had a kick and sufficiently peppered my soup.)
Soak the split peas and barley in cold water while you are assembling your soup. Dice bacon while frozen for easier cutting, put in hot large kettle and cook until well browned and crisp. Add onion, garlic and marjoram and cook until soft. Add all your other veggies and stir to coat for about 5 minutes more. Add your ham bone, bay leaf and water. Bring to boil, reduce heat to simmer for at least 3 hours. Stir occasionally and check your peas; when they are soft, it is done. Remove your bone and bay leaf. Pick all the ham from the bone and add it back into your soup. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (I used my Pampered Chef chopper to dice the onion, garlic, carrot and celery very fine. I just cubed the sweet potato with a knife. I salted to taste at the very end because sometimes cooking dry beans with salt makes them tougher. It didn't really need alot of salt because of the bacon and the ham.)
See how lovely the texture is? There is a piece of ham and sweet potato on that spoon!
The bread was some I had made for sandwiches which turned out really well except for the rising. I need to learn to wait. The Honey Butter is something that I have been making for years whenever I made homemade bread. Today I was watching Barefoot Contessa and Ina Garden was making the recipe I always use. I guess there are not that many different ways you can make honey butter.
Sandwich Bread with Flax Seeds
2 tablespoons yeast
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon of sugar
3 cups of warm water
3 Tbsp ground Flax Seeds
10 cups of flour
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 cup melted butter
Combine 1 tablespoon of sugar, the yeast and 1 cup of warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Let set for 10 minutes. Mix the yeast in well. Then add the 2 remaining cups of water, 1/2 cup sugar and butter. Mix together. Mix in 3 cups of the flour, one cup at a time. Then switch to the dough hook attachment and mix in the remaining 7 cups of flour, one cup at a time. Once all your flour is incorporated, set the mixer a notch higher for 4-5 minutes to knead. Put the dough in a large oiled bowl and flip to coat both sides with oil. Loosely cover bowl with plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray, and place in a warm place. Let it rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size. Punch down dough to remove air bubbles and divide into 3 even pieces of dough. Shape into loaves with floured hands and put into greased loaf pans. Cover pans with oiled plastic and then a dish towel. Set in a warm area for another hour or until doubled in size. Bake in a preheated oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. It is ready when it turns golden brown and sounds hollow when tapped! Remove from pans and cool on a cooling rack. (I let my dough rise for 1 hour but it had not doubled in size. I should have waited another 30 minutes at least. Then I was running out of time so I only let the loaves rise for 1 hour. The loaves should have been taller but I was impatient. It was delicious anyway.)
Cinnamon Honey Butter
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup honey
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch of kosher salt
Blend all ingredients together with a hand mixer until smooth. Put it in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate.
It was the perfect meal for a chilly fall day!