Saturday, November 19, 2016

Log Cabins and Bean Soup

The Log Cabins

I'm been sewing log cabin blocks while dressed in a warm winter sweater, thick socks, and my fleece lined winter slippers. Our record breaking warm weather has abruptly been replaced by bitter cold and a brisk north wind, so I couldn't have picked a better project for this week. A log cabin with a big fire in the fireplace sounds so warm and cozy right now.

So far, I've been following the original plan, but now that the log cabin blocks are finished, I'm not completely sure that I want to finish it like this.

I'm using 9" blocks, so I have lots of options and space for experimentation. It doesn't hurt that I'm not feeling pressured to have this finished by any particular date.
A Recipe for Ham and Bean Soup

Winter weather and hot soup are perfect companions, so my kitchen soup factory is back in business. This week, I cooked up a pot of old-fashioned ham and bean soup - perfect comfort food for a day that requires fuzzy slippers and warm socks.

Grandmother's Bean Soup With Ham

  • 1 medium onion, chopped 
  • 1 T vegetable oil
  • 1 15 oz can of chicken broth 
  • 4 or 5 oz ham cut into 1/2" cubes
  • 1/4 cup grated carrots
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill weed
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 15 oz cans of cannellini beans
  • 1 T ketchup
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • salt, if needed (I found that the ham was sufficiently salty, so I added no additional salt.)

1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy saucepan. Saute the chopped onions in the vegetable oil until golden.
2. Add the chicken broth, ham, carrots, bay leaves, parsley, dill weed, and water.
3. Cover and cook on medium low for 30 minutes, or until the carrots are tender.
4. Add the cannellini beans, pepper, and ketchup. Continue cooking for another 30 minutes. Add additional water if needed.
5. Remove bay leaves to serve.

And keep warm!