Hannah and I went out and about so ended up having a late lunch – more homemade pizza!  See I told you I like eating the same things over and over!

This was about 500 calories
This was about 500 calories

I decided not to make zucchini bread today, with temps in the 80’s, I didn’t want to have the oven on in the afternoon.  But, I decided to make a new soup!  My inspiration came from my local newspaper:

Creamy Stilton Soup with Sauteed Pears
Creamy Stilton Soup with Sauteed Pears

Of course, I made some modifications, i.e. NO ONIONS! “:evil:”  And I reduced the amount of butter from 5 tablespoons to 1, reduced the potatoes from 2 pounds to 1.5 pounds, and then reduced the amount of cheese from 10 ounces to 8.  It calls for all blue cheese, and while I am a fan, I didn’t want to have it overshadow the whole soup, so I did 4 ounces of blue cheese and 2 ounces of the last of my gouda mustard seed cheese.  And while I think the sauteed pears are a nice touch, for soup for lunches, it didn’t make sense.

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1.5 potatoes, diced
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1.5 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • 4 ounces blue cheese
  • 2 ounces mustard seed gouda
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk

In a large, heavy pot over medium heat, melt the butter.  Add the celery and saute until softened, about  5 minutes.  Add the potatoes, stock and thyme.  Bring to a simmer and reduce heat and cook, uncovered, until the vegetables are very tender, about 20 to 25 minutes.

Transfer soup to blender (unless you have a stick blender like me) and puree.  Over low heat, whisk in the cheese until it melts, then whisk in the milk.  heat for another minute and salt and pepper totaste.

My version: Makes 8 cups: 182 calories, 8 fat, 17 carbs, 1.75 fiber, 8 protein. 

The result?   So good!  Look at all that goey cheese before it melted!

I decided to try the Blogger Secret Ingredient challenge from this weeks ingredient: POLENTA!  Check it out at www.rhodeygirltests.com

This is what I started with:

And this is my recipe (for one serving):

  • 3 ounces sliced polenta (two 1.5 ounces slices)
  • 3 ounces garlic shrimp
  • 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese
  • .5 ounce pancetta
  • 2 ounces homemade marinara

Dice up 2 ounces of pancetta and pan fry to render out some of the fat.  Remove to separate plate after its browned.  Rinse out pan and pan fry slices of polenta in splash of olive oil mixed with butter flavored Pam.

When browned on both sides, remove to plate.  Heat pan to high and stir fry 3 ounces raw shrimp in 1/2 teaspoon olive oil, Italian seasoning and minced garlic (and lots of cracked pepper!). 

Assembly for 1 serving:  3 ounces pan fried polenta, 3 ounces shrimp, drizzle with warmed up marinara sauce and then sprinkled with .5 ounce diced pancetta and 1 tablespoon of Parmesan cheese:

Finished product:  262 calories, 8.3 fat, 20 carbs, 1.1 fiber, 25 protein

My daughters exact words: “I would pay $45 for an appetizer of this!”

The only thing I would do differently was to pan fry the polenta a bit more for a crispier crust, but this was SO GOOD!  Thanks to the hubby for suggesting the pancetta – it made the recipe!

Hope everyone had a great weekend!