Chicken Paprikash

Is it fall or winter? This weekend it happens to be both. We have reached our peak fall colors. Vibrant orange and gold surrounds us in all directions in Northern Minnesota. However, snow has fallen on and off for the last 24 hours. As the temperatures drop again this evening it is accumulating on the ground. No matter how pretty it is, it’s too early if you ask most of us!

I visited Just Dandy this afternoon for one of their Sip and Shop events. Of course I left with one of her wonderful smelling lotions and some scented melting wax. Wildflower Farm had her baked goodies there for sale. I picked up a loaf of her Roasted Garlic Bread which was the perfect addition to our Chicken Paprikash dinner. The recipe was out of Molly Yeh’s cookbook, Molly on the Range. I followed her recipe with a couple of changes. Rather than cooking it on the stove I dumped all the ingredients into a crock pot, minus the cream, and let it cook all afternoon. Once the chicken was cooked through I shredded it and placed it on top of *egg noodles. This is definitely a fall-ish recipe and one I will make again. After all, it was Stella approved!

*Egg noodles cooked in chicken broth. Once cooked I added some onion powder and Parmesan cheese.

Staying Warm in the Fall

A group of us got together last weekend at the Holiday Inn in Baxter, MN. 3 mommas and 5 littles (who are not really little any longer). We crammed ourselves into a suite and spent 24 hours at the fun indoor water park. Even the adults had a grand time screaming down the slides and hanging out in the “river”. The girls and I can not wait to go back with T. We were all exhausted by the end of the evening. I think we all crashed by 10:00 that evening.

We brought an abundance of veggies to snack on with dip and hummus. We actually did a number on those veggies prior to eating pizza and dessert *smile* however we still had plenty of leftover carrots and celery. With the temperatures dipping low the last couple of weeks I have been craving soup. I love my Vitamix in the summer for breakfast and protein smoothies, but when fall creeps in, I am all about the frothy soups it can whip up in seconds. The Vitamix recipes call for blending the ingredients for at least 7 minutes as it will heat the soup to a temp that you would want to eat soup at. However, I purée the ingredients and then transfer them over to a kettle and simmer on the stove.

Here is a spin on the Vitamix Cream of Celery Soup

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups chicken broth

1/2 of a small onion

4 cups chopped celery

1/3 cup chopped carrot

1 cooked sweet potato

1 garlic clove

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup Half and half

Direction:

Place all ingredients in Vitamix, blend until puréed. Simmer over low heat until desired temperature is reached.

Gingered Carrot Orange Soup is amazing too! And check out the color, how beautiful is that?

Friday Favorites: All Things Girls’ Weekend

Last weekend was an amazing weekend. Friday morning started off with a hair cut by Mikaela at M Salon. Always a complete joy to visit and relax with her. I have trusted her through all of my hair loss (ok, more like an abundance of thinning) due to pregnancies. I chopped it off into a pixie after each kid was born and have tried to grow it out. I am determined to not chop it again.

I got to work and a dear friend’s husband delivered a special treat from her as he was traveling through Bemidji. Nichole’s Pastry Shop in Fargo is a phenomenal place to eat treats, tea and coffee, of course. The desserts tasted amazing, but the words in the card she selected and wrote spoke to my heart and made me smile more. She always says the right words to encourage me to trust in my faith.

The girls and I went to Minneapolis to visit two of my best friends from jr. high and some of their kids. We relaxed, we went to the Crayola Experience at the Mall of America, ate out and got caught up on each other’s lives. We try to do girls’ weekends with kids at least once a year so our kids know each other too. It’s so important to me that the girls know some of their “other aunties”. It’s always semi-chaotic trying to have conversations with four kids interrupting every few minutes. Somehow, though, we make it through and move onto the next topic.

The girls and I ended the weekend with “real Auntie” Ash. Hairs were cut and my grays were colored. We left feeling refreshed and loved up. Time was short but there is nothing like love and hugs from a sister/auntie.

A well spent weekend always gone too quick. We have about four more weekends of crazy schedules but seeing family and friends make it all worth it.