The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Recipe Box

February 6, 2014

Soup for February Chill


Susquehanna Valley — Creamy Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 teaspoon sugar

3 cups vegetable broth

1/2 cup heavy cream

Grilled Cheese Croutons  (makes 60)

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

6 thin slices sandwich bread

1 cup (4 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar

To make the soup, heat the butter and olive oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over low heat. Add the onion, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes more. Sprinkle with the flour to make a roux, and stir constantly for 3 minutes more.

Stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar and vegetable broth. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Taste the soup and add salt and pepper, if necessary. Remove the soup from the heat and allow it to cool slightly. Working in batches, puree the soup in a food processor or blender. (Alternatively, puree the soup in the pot with an immersion blender). Return the soup to the pot and stir in the cream. Reheat over low heat just until hot. Do not boil. Serves 6 to 8.

To make the croutons, heat a grill pan or a large skillet over medium-high heat.

Mash together the butter and thyme in a small bowl until well blended.

Spread one side of each of the bread slices with the thyme butter. Place 3 slices, butter side down, in the hot pan. Top each slice with the cheese, then the remaining bread slices, butter side up. Grill until the sandwiches are toasted and browned and the cheese has melted, 3 to 5 minutes per side. Remove the sandwiches from the pan and allow them to cool slightly. Cut the sandwiches into 1-inch squares.

Serve the soup, accompanied by the Grilled Cheese Croutons.

(Recipe courtesy of "In the Kitchen with David -- comfort foods that takes you home," David Venable,

Text Only
Recipe Box
  • recipe.jpg

    Top 5 Comfort Food Recipes

    Potato Soup

    2 potatoes per person (diced)

    3 slices of White American cheese per person

    Put diced potatoes in water that barely covers them with a touch of salt. Cook until soft.

    Drain half the water. Add milk to cover the potatoes. Shred the cheese and add to milk and potatoes. Add a dash of white pepper.



    1 can Beef consomme

    2 lbs. ground hamburger

    1 bag ofEgg noodles

    1 can of mushrooms (whole or slided)

    1 small can of tomato paste

    1 can of mushroom soup

     8 oz sour cream

    parsley leaves

    onion salt

    Brown the meat. Strain it. Boil the noodles, drain. Add consomme, cream of mushroom soup, tomato paste, parsley and mushrooms to meat. Let simmer, stir occasionally, for ½ hour. Add scoop of mixture to sour cream to warm it. then add sour cream to mixture. Simmer 10 minutes, stirring constantly. Add noodles. Serve hot. 


    Broccoli Chicken and Rice

    Make 1.5 cups of white rice.

    2 cans of cream of broccoli soup


    1.5 lbs. chicken breasts, cut up

    Brown chicken. Add in cream of broccoli soup and 1 can full of milk on low, till well mixed. Serve over rice.


    Chicken Pot Pie

    Whole cooked chicken, cleaned from the bones and shredded.


    4 cup flour

    3/4 tsp salt

    Mix these two together, then cut in: 1/4 cup shortening, (can be done by hand, squishing it together, or a pastry cutter). Scramble 2 eggs in a bowl & add 1/2 cup of water. Pour this part over the dough and stir in till mixed. It will be VERY thick and dry. You will probably have to knead it with your hands. Split it into two pieces to roll it on a floured surface. Roll as thin as you can. Cut into squares w/ a pizza wheel. Drop into boiling broth at different places, a few at a time. Stir & dunk them down before you add more, not letting them touch as you add. You may have to add more hot liquid, don’t add cold liquid. When done, put heat on low, put lid on and let simmer for at least a half hr.

    Cook carrots, celery, onion, & potatoes. Parsley too!! Add in boullion with the chicken. Let simmer for 10 minutes then serve.


    Buffalo Chicken Mac & Cheese

    1lb elbow pasta

    3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cooked and cubed

    1 tbsp flour

    4-6 tbsp butter

    1 ½ cups milk

    1 oz. grated monterrey jack cheese

    3 oz mozzarella

    ½ cup sharply shredded cheddar cheese

    ½  cup buffalo wing sauce

    2/3 cup panko bread crumbs

    Cook pasta according to package directions, drain, and return to pot.  While the pasta is cooking, heat saucepan over medium heat and add the butter.  Add the flour once the butter is melted and bubbly.  Whisk together to create a little roux and then cook for about 1-2 minutes until it starts to get a little golden in color.  Add in the milk and turn the heat down to low.  Stir until the milk thickens and add in the cheeses. Stir until the mixture is smooth. Add the wing sauce. 

    Grease a 9x13 baking dish and add the pasta and cubed chicken. Mix well so that the chicken is throughout the pasta. Pour cheese sauce on top and make sure everything is evenly coated.  Sprinkle with bread crumbs and extra cheese. Bake for 25 minutes at 375F.




    Continued ...
    Feb 15, 2014 1 Photo