Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Best lunch!

I've already given you my weather report for today, so you know I've been a bit cold. After Delaney went to school, I had to run out to the grocery store for some bread because tomorrow is commissary day and I just needed enough to get me through until the morning. Well, I ended up with 2 different breads, eggs, apples (2 kinds), bananas, broccoli, and a packet of beef & broccoli stir-fry mix. (I'll use chicken in mine and give it a taste tonight to see if it is decent). So much for sticking to a list and just getting bread...but I can rationalize most of these purchases by saying the produce at Farm Fresh is a bit better than what we get at the commissary. At any rate, when I got home, I started thinking about lunch and what I wanted to have. Will and Tinna wanted PB&J, just like every other day...even though in the end William had a can of Spaghetti O's and Tinna had the sandwich....I remembered I still had some seafood cioppino in the freezer so I pulled that out and put it on the stove. One of the breads purchased at Farm Fresh was called "Rustic Bread" and was made of wheat and whole grains, nuts, that kind of thing. I sliced up 3 small slices of that, the largest was topped with swiss cheese and all were placed in the toaster oven together. Below is what my lunch looked like...

Oh man, I just cannot get enough of this soup! I'll post the recipe below.

Here's a photo of my refrigerator, too, but only because it looks like we're healthy eaters...

I forgot to mention I also bought Clementines! That's how you know Yule is on it's way...the Clementines become affordable in the stores. The twinkies have already eaten 2 a piece! They love them, not only because they are sweet, but because they can pretty much peel them without my help. I like that, too. Anything to promote self-sufficiency.

Crab Cioppino
From: Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook

Requirements: Large round or oval crockpot
Cook times: LOW for 4 to 6 hours then HIGH for 20 to 30 minutes (when crab is added)

1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium-size yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
One 15-ounce can tomato sauce
Two 28-ounce cans whole plum tomatoes, drained a bit (if packed in puree, don't drain)
1 cup dry white wine
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon dried basil, or 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes* (I found this soup to be on the spicy side, a 7 on a 1-10 scale so if you do not like heat, use less of this)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 steamed whole crabs, cracked and cleaned (ask your fishmonger to do this)

1. In a medium-size skillet, heat the oil over medium heat, then cook the onion, stirring until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Transfer to the slow cooker and add the tomato sauce, tomatoes, wine, bay leaf, basil, pepper flakes, and oregano. Break up the tomatoes with the back of a spoon. Cover and simmer on LOW for 4 to 6 hours.

2. Season with salt and pepper. Add the crab, cover, and cook on HIGH for 20 to 30 minutes to heat the crab through. Serve immediately.

MIXED SEAFOOD CIOPPINO: In place of the crabs, substitute 1 pound of medium-size (16 to 20 count) shrimp with their tails left on** (I used frozen shrimp that had no tails), peeled and deveined; 2 cracked and cleaned steamed crabs; 1/2 pound large sea scallops; and 1 pound white-fleshed fish fillets, such as red snapper, sea bass, halibut, or monkfish. Add to the hot tomato sauce during the last 20 to 30 minutes of cooking.

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