So I had a cold.
I say had because the cold- for the most part- is gone. I am ever thankful for the hearty constitution that is the legacy of my peasant and Native American ancestors-though it does seem to have bypassed my back. Oh well, can't win them all.
As I mentioned yesterday, I am brilliant and had the foresight a while back to put some easily warmed up meals in the freezer(as well as that wonderful loaf of bread). And since I was a sicky and didn't really want to cook, I pulled the most delicious and hearty soup from the freezer.
This is a recipe from Africa adapted to my taste and I am surprised that it is not a staple of Southern cooking as so much of that is heavily influenced by the foods and cooking techniques brought to the Americas by slaves so long ago. Anyway, I'm not here to give culinary history lessons-though it is a fascinating subject-but to share a wonderful and deliciously different soup that is very economical to make and very satisfying to all your senses( yes, even hearing since the "Mmmm, that's good!", "I love this soup!", "Can you make that soup again Mom?" etc...are definitely a delight to my ears!) I write my recipes a little differently so please read through before starting and remember "mis en place" is a good cooks best friend!
Sweet Potato Soup
Heat in large stock pot or Dutch oven at medium to medium high:
2 T vegetable oil
1C onion chopped
1T garlic chopped
1T chili powder
1t kosher salt
1/2t cayenne pepper(optional but please try it!)
Saute until onions are almost transparent.
1/2C or about 3 average size carrots diced
1/2C or about 2 celery stalks-with the leaves!-diced
1 red bell pepper or one jar roasted red peppers diced (it is possible at my grocery to get a jar for $1.89 that contains about 3 whole peppers where as 1 "fresh" in produce can cost more than $2-get what you like as I've used both with excellent results)
2 C or about 1lb sweet potatoes peeled and diced
Continue to saute a couple of minutes.
4C chicken broth
This will deglaze the pot. Be prepared! Those spices will hit you right in the nose so take a step back if you're especially sensitive.
2C cooked shredded chicken (I almost always use leftover rotisserie chicken for this)
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatos-I like fire roasted myself
2/3C natural peanut butter( again, I use the store brand at about $2 a jar, please don't use one of those whipped hydrogenated types because it will make a big difference)
Bring soup up to a simmer and and keep it there about 30 minutes or until the veggies are tender. At this point you may want to add up to a tablespoon of sugar or even more salt, to your taste.
From beginning to end this should take maybe an hour with 30 minutes of active work. Broken down its about 15-20 minutes for prep, 10 minutes assemblage, and up to 30 minutes simmering.
Accompany this delicious soup with a nice crusty bread and dinner is served!
This recipe serves my family of 4, with enough left to freeze(up to about 3 months) and feed us all again. And, yes, even Baby loves it, cayenne and all!