The Odessa Record -

Hearty soups for cold winter days

Series: Welcome to my Kitchen | Story 4

February 28, 2019

Winter isn’t giving up easy this year. Soup season may last through April, and a good thing. A number of Facebook “Welcome to My Kitchen” followers shared yummy soup recipes, and I will never get to try them all before printing in a timely manner. So this week, the recipes are untested, but from known good cooks.

Peggy Salo shared a recipe for Sausage-Bean-Barley Soup. She noted several variations in the instructions, making it easy to adjust to ingredients you have on hand.

Sausage-Bean-Barley Soup

1 link smoked sausage

1-2 yellow onions, medium diced

1 1/2 cups small diced celery

3-4 cloves garlic, minced,

5-6 medium carrots, sliced

1 Tbsp vegetable oil

2 cans (15 ounces each) dark or light kidney beans, pinto beans, black-eye peas or black beans

1 can (15 ounces) diced tomatoes

1 large can ( about 28 ounces) crushed tomatoes

2-3 quarts beef stock (preferably homemade)

Worcestershire sauce

“Better Than Bouillon” (paste from Costco)

1/2 to 1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp dried oregano leaves

1 tsp dried crushed basil leaves

2 bay leaves

3/4 to 1 rounded cup pearl barley

Salt and pepper to taste.

Slice sausage link in half lengthwise, then slice 1/4 inch thick. Dice or slice vegetables as directed.

In a large (8-10 quart) kettle heat the vegetable oil and add sausage and vegetables. Sauté until onions are translucent and sausage begins to brown slightly.

Add minced garlic and sauté just until the flavor blooms; don’t brown.

Add beans, tomatoes and seasonings, adjusting to personal taste, add the beef stock. Bring soup to a simmer (do not boil) and cook for 45 minutes to 1 hour to blend flavors. Add barley and simmer 1 hour longer or until barley is tender. Season with salt and pepper. Yield: “Enough to feed an army” about 7-8 quarts.

Note: Some seasonings do not include amounts. My suggestion, start with 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce and 1 tsp of the Better Than Bouillon, than add more in 1/2 to 1 tsp increments until desired flavor.

Peggy suggest serving with crusty bread or rolls, and a green salad for a healthy, winter meal.

Sadie Dustin, Welcome to My Kitchen Facebook follower, shared two favorite soup recipes. Crock Pot Creamy Buffalo Chicken Noodle Soup, a zesty noodle soup, comes from the website Wine and Glue.

Crock Pot Creamy Buffalo Chicken Noodle Soup

3 medium carrots, peeled and sliced

2 stalks celery, diced

2 cloves garlic, diced

1 medium onion, diced

1 pound chicken breasts

12 ounces buffalo sauce

4 cups chicken stock

2 cups wide egg noodles

1/2 cup heavy cream

Blue cheese crumbles, for garnish

Place carrots, celery, garlic, onion, chicken, buffalo sauce and chicken stock in slow cooker crock. Cook on low for 3 1/2 hours.

Add egg noodles and raise temperature to high, cook for 1/2 hour or until noodles are tender.

Meanwhile, remove the chicken from the crock, shred chicken and return to the crock. Turn off the slow cooker and stir in heavy cream. Serve topped with blue cheese. Yield: 4-6 servings.

Note: Buffalo sauce is spicy, so soup should need no further seasoning. Find it in the grocery aisle along with barbeque and cooking sauces.

Sadie’s other submission is Chicken Cordon Bleu Soup. She found the recipe at, where the recipe is attributed to contributor Nikki.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Soup

1/4 cup butter

1/4 cup flour

2 1/2 cups half and half

2 1/2 cups whole milk

1 Tbsp chicken base or two chicken bouillon cubes

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

2 1/2 cups chopped rotisserie chicken or cooked chicken breast

1/2 cup cooked and chopped bacon

1 cup cubed ham

2 cups grated Swiss cheese

In a large saucepan melt butter. Stir in flour, mixing to make a roux, cook for about 1 minutes over medium heat. Add half and half, milk and chicken base. Heat, stirring constantly for a few minutes, until blended. Add cream cheese, and while stirring constantly, bring to a boil. Immediately add chicken, bacon and ham and remove from heat. Stir in Swiss cheese.

Return to low heat and stir until cheese is melted. Serve immediately. Yield: 4 servings.

Making special diets appealing is a difficulty many folks have to contend with. Food and additive allergies often prevent use of convenience foods and mixes. Boxed Mac N Cheese, a staple for many, is off limits to others.

Danielle Hardung put her family favorite Mac N Cheese recipe in the first “Friends of the Pool” recipe book. This recipe may be made with gluten free macaroni. Though I have included it in the column several times, I have had requests to include it again.

Mac N Cheese

2 cups dry macaroni noodles


2 large eggs

1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk

2 tsp Dijon mustard

1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

4 Tbsp butter

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

2 cups shredded Colby-Jack cheese

Cook macaroni according to package directions.

Meanwhile, mix together eggs, half of the milk, mustard and tabasco, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper.

Drain pasta and return to saucepan. Over low heat, stir in butter until melted. Stir in egg mixture and half the cheese.

Continue to cook over low heat, gradually stirring in milk and the rest of the cheese until hot and creamy, about 5 minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper if desired. Yield: 4 adult servings, or 2 starving kids.

Share your favorite recipes of all kinds by sending them to: Welcome to My Kitchen, c/o The Odessa Record, P.O. Box 458, Odessa, WA 99159, email or drop them in the Welcome to My Kitchen mail tin in The Odessa Record Office. Follow Welcome to My Kitchen on Facebook. It is too early and cold for any gardening except reading the seed catalogs.


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