Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Pizza Soup

One of my favorite websites for trying new recipes right now is A Year of Slow Cooking.  This awesome lady in 2007 (I think) cooked a new recipe every day in her crock pots (plural; she has an arsenal and makes me want a few more!).  She still posts new crock pot recipes from time to time and I find her website amazing.  Right now I love my crock pot.  Absolutely.  Love.  It.  Here where it is normally a bazillion degrees (not really but it gets close!), it is super nice to use the crock pot because it doesn't heat up the kitchen like the oven does.  Here where cooking from scratch is the norm, it is nice to throw something in the crock pot that is magically ready at the end of the day.  Do you get the point?  I love my crock pot and this site rocks.

This is definitely on my Christmas wish list this year (Stephanie's cookbook inspired by her year of slow cooking):

While Mr. Sojourner was away this weekend and I was unpacking I decided to try this new recipe: Pizza Soup.

The finished product.  It was super good. I will me making it again soon.

The Little Sojourners liked it too.  It was a hit.

It was especially good on the rainy and cool weekend we had (get out your winter coats it's 80 degrees!).

And of course we had to throw in a salad to make is officially a healthy meal, right?

Here's the scoop via Stephanie's website (my commentary in red):

--1 jar (14 oz) of pizza sauce (I used our pizza sauce recipe here.)
--3 empty jars full of water
--1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
--1/2 red onion, chopped
--1 cup sliced mushrooms (I added diced zucchini because we had it on hand.  I think this would be great with lots of veggies!  Next time I will try some carrots and maybe some canned mushrooms because we can't get fresh ones here, but fresh would be really good.)
--1 cup baby tomatoes, cut in quarters (or 1 can diced tomatoes, drained) (I used diced roma 'cause that's what we had and can get cheapest here.)
--2 already-cooked Italian sausage (I used chicken Italian sausage)  (I skipped the sausage because I would have had to make my own.)
--1 cup sliced pepperoni, sliced in quarters (Hormel turkey pepperoni is labeled gluten free)
--8 fresh basil leaves, chopped (or 1/2 T dried)  (I used dried.)
--1 T dried oregano
--1/2 to 1/3 cup of dried pasta (if your pasta is tiny, use 1/3 cup. if it's big, do 1/2. I used 1/2 cup Trader Joe's brown rice penne) (I used more; about 1 1/2-2 cups because I used less meat and I wanted it to be hearty.)
--shredded mozzarella cheese (to add later) (Yum!)

The Directions.
*Use a 5 or 6 quart crock pot for this recipe. Serves 4 hungry adults, or 2 hungry adults and 2 kids with enough leftovers to feed them all again.  (It served me, our three kids, and a leftover big bowl for Daddy to try.)
*Wash and prepare veggies. (I sauteed the onion and zucchini together first to make sure the zucchini cooked all the way.) Dump them into the crock pot. Cut up the sausage into small pieces--I sliced, then cut the pieces in fourths. Add to crock pot. Cut up the pepperoni, add it, too. Add basil and oregano. Pour in the pizza sauce, and follow with three empty jars of water.
*Cover and cook on low for 7-9 hours. Everything in this is already cooked, so you are really only heating through and allowing the flavors to meld.  (Mine probably cooked more like 5-6 hours.)
*Thirty minutes before serving, add the dry pasta, and turn to high. My pasta only took 20 minutes to soften quite nicely.
*Garnish/top with shredded mozzarella cheese.  (The best part!  My kids added some grated parm too.)

This was a winner with us!

Kind Regards, 

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