12/16/07

Baby, It's Cold Outside!



The Calvin and Hobbes comic strip really has nothing to do with this post. It just makes me laugh.

" It's cold." I said.
" Well duh, it's winter!" You said back to the computer screen.
No kidding, but still. I know I shouldn't complain because I'm not one of those poor wild mustangs with icicles hanging from their manes like in Pioneer Woman's blog.

What you don't know is that I live in a house that was built in 1920 with the original gas heater. You know in "It's A Wonderful Life" when Jimmy Stewart complains about " This drafty old house" well that's my house. Old and drafty. For example right now it's 39 degrees outside and in my bedroom it's 50 degrees. I can see my breath.
"Well, get a space heater for your bedroom." See, I know what your saying to your computer screen.

" I would but I have a arched roof in my bedroom and the heat just rises to the top right along with my energy bill. And did I mention I have a drafty old house?"
Anyways, I've been outside all weekend at a soccer tournament. And when not at the tourney I've been grocery shopping, Christmas shopping, doing laundry, building a water wheel, wrapping 30 some odd students Christmas gifts for my daughters class, baking cookies for my husband and his co-workers, trying to type my blog, and also trying to figure out my brand new digital camera, which is about to make me cry. Riddle me this: WHY, OH WHY, don't they include a memory card with the camera that you have purchased? and WHY, OH WHY, did the experienced camera guy (i.e. not a Best Buy rep) sell me the wrong memory card when I very clearly told him the make and model of my camera and I don't know squat about digital cameras! Oy Vey! I'm tired and I frustrated and now my kids want dinner.
Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup:(courtesy of Bon Appetit)
3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 10-to-11 ounce fully cooked smoked Portuguese linguica cut crosswise into 1/4 inch thick slices
2 medium onions, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 pounds red-skinned sweet potatoes, peeled, quartered lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/4 inch thick slices
1 pound white-skinned potatoes, peeled, halved lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/4 inch-thick slices ( wouldn't it have been easier to say cubed, Bon Appetit?)
6 cups chicken stock
1 9-ounce bag fresh spinach
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a heavy large pot over medium high heat. Add sausage; cook until brown, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Transfer sausage to paper towels to drain. Add onions and garlic to pot and cook until translucent, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add all potatoes and cook until beginning to soften, stirring often, about 12 minutes. Add broth; bring to boil, scraping up browned bits. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until potatoes are soft, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Using potato masher, mash some of the potatoes in pot. Add browned sausage to soup. Stir in spinach and simmer just until wilted, about 5 minutes. Stir in remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Season with salt and pepper. Divide among warmed bowls and serve.
* I also add a can or two of drained canelli beans.
You wouldn't think that this soup would be hearty, or at least I didn't, but it is strangely satisfying and warming.