Sunday, September 16, 2007

First taste of fall

When I woke up this morning and took my dogs outside, I shivered as I stood on my back porch in my pajamas. This is the first day it's been chilly in the morning so that always means one thing to me...fall is on it's way! Yes, it still ended up being in the 80's today but the chill in the air early this morning made me want to make soup and bake anyway. So that's just what I did today. I was on my own for dinner tonight and decided soup would be the perfect thing to make. I normally make vegetable beef soup, but my ground beef was frozen so I just made vegetable soup tonight.

Vegetable Soup

1/2 large white onion, finely chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
8 oz beef broth
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp sugar (just trust me)
2 1/2-3 cups mixed vegetables (frozen, fresh or canned) Mine was a mixture of potatoes, corn, peas, carrots, and green beans

Heat olive oil in a large pot. Add chopped onion and cook for about 5 min. Add beef broth and canned tomatoes. Next add the mixed vegetables. Add seasonings and stir to combine. Cover and simmer on low for about 35-45 min, stirring occasionally.

*I add the sugar to bring out the savory flavors in the soup.
*Sometimes I add half lb cooked lean ground beef and 2 chopped garlic cloves to make vegetable beef soup.

I also got to break in my new KitchenAid mixer today. I made a recipe that my husband's co-worker sent home with him. Apparently everyone knows I love to cook and bake because I get recipes from people all the time. I'm very glad I tried this one. It's delicious!

Pecan Pie Coffee Cake Bars

4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 stick butter, melted
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup self rising flour
2 cups chopped pecans (I only used 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon (I added this, not in the original recipe)

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, beat all four eggs with a mixer. Add sugar and mix with eggs to combine. Next add the butter and vanilla and combine with other ingredients. Add flour and cinnamon and again combine well with other ingredients. Stir in chopped pecans. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan. Bake for 30-35 min. Be careful not to over cook. The top will be golden brown, but the inside will still be a little sticky when a toothpick is inserted. It will set up as it cools. Slice into bars once cool.

*The outside is slightly cakey and the edges crusty from the sugar that crystallizes as it cooks, but the inside is gooey like pecan pie filling. Delicious and perfect with coffee!


Elly said...

holy cow, these look SO good. i love pecan anything. YUM! I think I just gained a pants size looking at them, lol

sweetflutterbys3 said...

Your post is wonderful! It makes me want to sing "Fall is here, Fall is here!" When I get time, I want to try making the Pecan Pie Coffee Cake bars. They remind me so much of autumn and Thanksgiving, at the same time :)