Wednesday, January 13, 2010
intrigue and adventure (and a few tangents)
So, yesterday morning I looked at my handy-dandy menu schedule that I keep on the refrigerator. I schedule meals for two weeks at at time. However, because of this and that, we don't follow it religiously, and so I only actually make the two-week schedule every 4 weeks or so.
Anyway . . .
The first thing on the schedule that we hadn't already eaten (that was on the menu for January 7th incidentally,) was Sweet & Sour Chicken--using a new recipe in my "30 low-fat meals in 30 minutes" cookbook.
However . . .
As I was pawing my way through our freezer, looking for frozen chicken breasts, I came across an un-labeled Ziploc bag, containing meat of uncertain properties.
By which I mean that I couldn't tell by looking at it exactly what kind of meat it was.
I knew it wasn't ground beef, and I knew it wasn't chicken. It looked kind of like pork, but not exactly.
Knowing how things can get lost in the freezer, and imagining myself cleaning up in five years or so only to find this bag of meat, the one that I had told myself that we would eat "someday", I (uncharacteristically) changed my menu plans. Pulling the mystery meat out of the freezer, I determined to let it thaw and then work our dinner plans around whatever this happened to be.
It was high adventure time in the Cantwell home, believe you me!
Five hours later, I had my answer.
Specifically, ham that we took home with us from our glorious Christmas Eve Celebration at Eric's brother's home.
Good delicious ham that I had put in the freezer because we were going out of town and I didn't want it to spoil before we could eat it. Only I forgot to label it, because I was certain that I'd be able to remember what it was and how we got it.
I thumbed through my cookbooks, and found a slow-cooker chowder recipe that I thought would be just the thing.
I was right. It was delicious, easy, and made the house smell great. What could you want more than that?
And so, I give you the recipe. I imagine it would even be good if you were to actually plan to make it in advance.
Just a note--I halved the ingredients. That's because Eric and I are trying to be better about not taking seconds, and Heather doesn't eat vegetables, with the exception of tomatoes and cream of broccoli soup. She also doesn't like ham, which is something that I learned yesterday.
(One day Heather and I will have words and probably even a battle of wills over her eating habits, but I wasn't up to it yesterday.)
Happy Wednesday to you.
Farmhouse Ham and Vegetable Chowder
2 cans cream of celery soup (c of chicken soup works fine here)
2 cups diced cooked ham (or one medium sized Ziploc bag full of leftover ham)
1 pkg frozen corn, thawed (or a can of corn is fine-just make sure you drain it first)
1 large potato, cut into ½ inch pieces
½ tsp dried thyme
2 cups small broccoli florets (or a thawed package of frozen mixed vegetables including broccoli, carrots, red peppers, and I don't remember what else)
½ cup milk
Combine soup, ham, corn, potato, and thyme in slow cooker; mix well. Cover, cook on low 6-8 hours or high 3-4 hours.
Stir in broccoli/vegetables & milk. Cover; cook on high 15 minutes or until heated through and broccoli is crisp-tender.