By Lisa Shrewsberry
Editor’s Note: Recipes and images courtesy of Taste of Home
Soup is a “go to” staple come scarf and hat season. When daylight is in limited supply, there’s simply not enough time for both holiday mayhem and daily dinner preparations.
Taste of Home magazine has hosted a number of sippable treats in its repertoire, ones hearty enough to deserve a fork and delicious enough to take your spoon back for seconds. Fall ingredients like butternut squash may take a little extra prep work the night before, but slow-cooker selections ensure mealtime is just a doorknob turn away after a workday or shopping trip.
In addition to savory soups, there are warm drinks to sweeten the season, ones Taste of Home readers refer to as “comfort in a cup” to add a cozy touch to family evenings or gatherings with friends. Two to try: a citrus-y cranberry tea and a silky homemade chai.
Great taste doesn’t have to be difficult! Don’t forget tomorrow’s Taste of Home Cooking School sponsored by Gutter Pro of West Virginia at the Beckley-Raleigh County Convention Center. Tickets may still be purchased in advance or at the door for $15. Doors open at 4:30 p.m. to visit vendors and for prize registrations, tastings and more. The show starts at 6:30 p.m. when Taste of Home Culinary Specialist Cheryl Cohen takes to the stage to dish out step-by-step entrees and sides for fall and holiday get-togethers.
Butternut Squash Soup Recipe
Total Time: Prep: 30 min. Cook: 6-1/4 hours
Makes: 14 servings
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
1 medium butternut squash (about 4 pounds), peeled and cubed
3 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) vegetable broth
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon minced fresh gingerroot
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cinnamon stick (3 inches)
1 package (8 ounces) PHILADELPHIA® Cream Cheese, softened and cubed
1. In a small skillet, saute onion in butter until tender. Transfer to a 5-or 6-quart slow cooker; add squash. Combine the broth, brown sugar, ginger, garlic and cinnamon; pour over squash. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or until squash is tender.
2. Cool slightly. Discard cinnamon stick. In a blender, process soup in batches until smooth. Return all to slow cooker. Whisk in cream cheese; cover and cook 15 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Yield: 14 servings (2-1/2 quarts).
3/4 cup equals 135 calories, 7 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 22 mg cholesterol, 483 mg sodium, 17 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 2 g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1-1/2 fat, 1 starch.
Originally published as Butternut Squash Soup in Taste of Home Everyday Slow Cooker & One Dish Recipes Annual 2010, page 25
White Bean Chicken Chili
Total Time: Prep: 35 min. Cook: 3 hours
Makes: 6 Servings
3/4 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons California Olive Ranch® Olive Oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cans (15 ounces each) white kidney or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained, divided
3 cups chicken broth, divided
1-1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
Sour cream and minced fresh cilantro, optional
Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. In a large skillet over medium heat, brown chicken in oil.
Stir in the onion, garlic and jalapeno; cook 2 minutes longer. Sprinkle with oregano and cumin; cook 1 minute longer or until chicken is browned and vegetables are tender. Transfer to a 3-qt. slow cooker.
In a small bowl, mash 1 cup of beans; add 1/2 cup broth and stir until blended. Add to the slow cooker with the remaining beans and broth.
Cover and cook on low for 3 to 3-1/2 hours or until chicken is tender. Stir before serving. Sprinkle with cheese. Garnish with sour cream and cilantro if desired. Yield: 6 servings.
Editor’s Note: Wear disposable gloves when cutting hot peppers; the oils can burn skin. Avoid touching your face.
1 cup equals 334 calories, 15 g fat (7 g saturated fat), 64 mg cholesterol, 1,063 mg sodium, 25 g carbohydrate, 6 g fiber, 24 g protein.
Originally published as White Bean Chicken Chili in Taste of Home February/March 2008, page 31
Vanilla Chai Tea
Total Time: Prep/Total Time: 25 min.
Makes: 6 servings
8 whole peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon whole allspice
2 cardamom pods
1 cinnamon stick (3 inches)
4 whole cloves
8 individual tea bags
1 tablespoon honey
4 cups boiling water
2 cups 2% milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 1/2 teaspoons confectioner’s sugar
In a large bowl, crush peppercorns, allspice, cardamom, cinnamon stick and cloves with the end of a wooden spoon until aroma is released. Add tea bags, honey and boiling water. Cover and steep for 6 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, heat milk. Strain tea into a heat-proof pitcher; stir in milk and vanilla.
In a small bowl, beat whipping cream and confectioners’ sugar until soft peaks form. Serve individual servings of tea with whipped cream; sprinkle with allspice. Yield: 6 servings.
To Make Ahead: Whipped cream can be made a couple of hours in advance; cover and refrigerate.
1 cup with 2 tablespoons topping equals 131 calories, 9 g fat (6 g saturated fat), 33 mg cholesterol, 48 mg sodium, 9 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 3 g protein.
Originally published as Vanilla Chai Tea in Taste of Home Christmas Annual 2010, page 84.
Autumn Tea Recipe
Total Time: Prep/Total Time: 15 min.
Makes: 12 servings
5 individual tea bags
5 cups boiling water
5 cups unsweetened apple juice
2 cups cranberry juice
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
3. Place the tea bags in a large heat-proof bowl; add boiling water. Cover and steep for 8 minutes. Discard tea bags. Add the remaining ingredients to tea; stir until sugar is dissolve. Serve warm or over ice. Yield: 3 quarts.
One 1-cup serving (prepared with reduced-calorie cranberry juice and sugar substitute) equals 66 calories, trace fat (trace saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 4 mg sodium, 17 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, trace protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1 fruit.
Originally published as Autumn Tea in Taste of Home October/November 2003, page 41