As of this writing, we are experiencing sloppy roads and temperatures in the thirties. Looking out at the lake we can see one lone fisherman. We check on him every few minutes to make sure he hasn’t fallen through a crack in the ice. I’m not a fisherman, and if I was, I wouldn’t be out on the ice today.
It’s rainy and cold, so it’s a good day for a hot cup of soup and a grilled cheese sandwich. Tomato soup goes great with grilled cheese. If you’re a fan of chicken soup, here’s a recommended recipe, including the following ingredients:
- One bone-in chicken breast with skin (about ¾ pound); ¼ cup of finely chopped shallots; ½ cup of finely diced celery; one cup sliced carrots; four cups low-sodium chicken broth; two and ½ cups of water; ½ tsp salt; 1/8 tsp marjoram; 1/8 tsp thyme; a pinch of black pepper; and three ounces of cooked wide egg noodles.
- Place chicken, skin side down, in preheated 4-quart sauce pan and brown over medium heat for about five minutes to render some of the chicken fat. Remove chicken and reduce heat to low. Add shallots and stir briefly (one to two minutes); do not brown. Return chicken to the pan and add remaining ingredients, except the noodles. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes or until the chicken is tender. Remove chicken and let cool. Discard bones and skin. Dice chicken meat and return to pan. Add cooked noodles. Serve or refrigerate. Bring the refrigerated soup to a boil before serving. This will serve eight 1-cup servings.
This soup takes a little bit longer to prepare, but it tastes like the soup your grandmother might have prepared and it’s more nutritious than the soup you get out of a can.
Super Bowl is Sunday, Feb. 11, which means there will be plenty of Super Bowl parties. If you are one of the lucky ones to host one, or if you will be a guest, here are a few tips on how to eat healthy at the party:
- Eat before the game. Skipping breakfast and lunch to save calories isn’t a great idea. You’ll arrive at the party starving, and it’s easy to go overboard on Super Bowl food when you’re hungry.
- Survey the buffet before you make a move. Look over the food choices before you fill your plate. Take a healthy helping from the crudite platter and choose smaller portions of wings, pizza, or other high-calorie foods.
- Be careful with dips. Guacamole and hummus are loaded with healthful nutrients and are rich in good fats, but the calories add up fast. Salsa has one-fifth the calories, but remember that salsas can be high in sodium.
- Think about skipping the chips. You can have a lot more popcorn and carrots for the same calories you’d get in five tortilla chips.
- Avoid double dipping of the spreads. Provide your guests with a serving spoon and small plates near the chips and dip so they may put the dip on a plate. Dirty hands are one of the biggest culprits for spreading bacteria. Finger foods are especially vulnerable, so place tongs near each platter. Cousin Timmy scolded George Costanza for double dipping on Seinfeld.
Norm Stutesman lives in Three Rivers. He receives mail at P.O. Box 103 in Three Rivers.