Monthly Archives: December 2014

Copycat Panera® Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe

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Here’s my broccoli and cheddar soup recipe that I love so much. It took me a while to find one that I liked, and then I tweaked it a bit. If it’s thick enough, you can even use it as a dip. I hope you enjoy!

1 tablespoon of butter

1/4 cup of melted butter

1/4 cup of flour

2 cups of milk

2 cups of chicken stock

1/2 onion-diced

1 bag of frozen broccoli florets

1 cup matchstick carrots

1 stalk of celery-cut into small pieces

2 1/2 cups of shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Salt and pepper to taste

Boil frozen broccoli until it is pretty much cooked, drain, and chop it up coarsely. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a pot. Next, saute the onion in the butter until the onion is semitransparent. Whisk the flour and the quarter cup of melted butter together until the flour loses its lumpy texture (add a little bit of milk to it to keep it from burning, just 1 or 2 tablespoons at a time). Whisk the 2 cups of milk into the flour mixture, then stir in the chicken stock. Simmer until the flour taste is gone. Add all the veggies and cook until the veggies are tender. Stir in the cheese until it melts, and finally salt and pepper to your taste. Enjoy!

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Hibachi Chicken, Fried Rice, Veggies, Sticky Rice, and Cream Cheese Wontons

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I couldn’t quite figure out how I wanted to do this post, but I figure just all in one place is fine. This entire meal took about an hour and half or so to complete. It was YUMMY.  Things are in sequential order, for the most part. Read it through before cooking. (See my food folder for my egg drop soup recipe, it was one of my first recipe posts.)

Sticky Rice

2 cups of uncooked rice (medium grain is preferable)

4 cups of water

Bring the water to a boil and then stir in the rice. Cover the pot and let it simmer on a medium-low temperature. It’s going to take about 20 minutes to cook, but start looking at the water level around 12 minutes. DO NOT OPEN THE LID. You know it’s done when you can’t really tell if there’s water in there or not. Once it’s done, fluff the rice with a fork or wooden spoon. Take out 4 cups of the sticky rice and set it aside to cool down (this will be the rice for the fried rice). The remaining rice is your sticky rice.

Hibachi Chicken

2 large pieces of chicken (preferably breasts)

1 tablespoon of vegetable oil

1 teaspoon of sesame oil

2 tablespoons of butter

3 tablespoons of soy sauce

1 lemon

A bit of salt and pepper

Heat the both of the oils up. While that’s heating, cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Add the chicken, butter, soy sauce, the juice from the lemon, and just a little bit of salt and pepper. (If this is too much salt or tang for you, then cut back the lemon juice to just half, use only 1 tbs of butter, and 1/2 tsp of sesame oil.) Set aside the chicken and keep it warm (I just put the chicken and the juices in a glass bowl by the stove). Don’t clean off the pan, you’ll need it for your fried rice.

Veggies

1 tablespoon of vegetable oil

1 teaspoon of sesame oil

1 tablespoon of butter

2 tablespoons of soy sauce

1 large white onion (I do mean large)

1 large zucchini (haha I did’t have to use spell check for that, I’m proud of myself)

A little bit of salt and pepper

You want to cook this at the same time you cook the chicken. This will not take as long as the chicken, but the chicken will be done shortly after. Heat up the oils and cut up the onion and zucchini (save 1/2 cup of the onion). Cut the onion into slivers and quarter the zucchini. As soon as the oil is heated, add the veggies and everything else. Cook until the veggies are tender. Set the veggies to the side on a plate and keep warm. Don’t clean the pan, you’ll use it for the bean sprouts.

Bean Sprouts

1 tablespoon of butter

1 table spoon of soy sauce

1 can of bean sprouts

As soon as the veggies are done cooking, add the butter and melt it. Next, add the soy sauce and bean sprouts. Save a cup for the fried rice and the rest can be mixed in with the veggies. (You can just add all the veggies back to veggie skillet and cook it all a little bit longer to blend it better.)

Fried Rice

2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

1/2 cup of white onion

1 cup of bean sprouts

2 large eggs

4 tablespoons of butter

4 cups of cooked rice (cool to the touch)

4 tablespoons of soy sauce

Start heating up the oil in the skillet that cooked the chicken. You can either leave the onion in slivers or dice it. Add the onion and saute it. Once the onion is tender, add the bean sprouts. Saute for a couple of minutes and scoot the mixture to the side of the skillet. On the other side, scramble the two eggs. After that is mixed well, add the rice and butter. Then after all of that is mixed, stir in the soy sauce until it is well mixed. This is done.

Cream Cheese Wontons

1 package of wonton wrappers

1 package of chive and onion cream cheese

-or-

1 8-ounce package of regular cream cheese

1 bunch of green onions

Garlic Salt

Water

Vegetable oil

Heat up the oil. Soften the cream cheese. (If adding the onions and garlic salt, just mix it together with the cream cheese.) Have a little bit of water in a bowl. Set out a wrapper, wet all of the edges, add around a tablespoon of the cream cheese mixture, and fold it in half. Repeat. I normally just make about twelve wontons. Fry just a few at a time until brown on both side. Add a little salt once it’s done if you love salt like me. Serve.

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Musings of a Cop’s Daughter

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I am the daughter of a former law enforcement officer. My dad took his retirement early being that his body was pretty beat up after years of physical altercations and instances on the job. Needless to say, it was sometimes awkward in school. My dad used to go to classmates’ houses for domestic disturbances or whatnot. Lately, I’ve been seeing and hearing a lot more cop bashing. (You know, there was a time I wouldn’t even use the word, “cop.” I saw it as disrespectful.)

The older I got, the more I understood the dangers of my dad’s job. Whether it be from criminals, driving, or even crooked cops. There was something always to worry about. I understand now just why my dad was always onto me about safety, such as always keeping the doors locked, never wear heels in case I have to run or fight, keep an eye out for people around me, etc. Eventually I came to appreciate the sacrifices my dad made.

Seeing all of the negativity surround law enforcement officers now offends me greatly. Don’t blame policemen for your mistakes or the mistakes of others. Many officers of the law are under constant stress for their lives and the lives of others every day. Routine traffic stops can quickly turn deadly, all because a guy doesn’t want another ticket.

Police officers have to see gruesome scenes, even see people kill themselves while they are helpless to stop them. Forgive me for saying so, but who are you to say cops are out there to get you? Who are you to say that they’re worthless? Who are you to say that cops are racist? They see the worst of people, but they keep going out there to help people. As a society, we can’t exist without the police.

The police save many lives every day in many different ways. Are there bad officers? Yes, but there are bad people in all walks of life. I can tell you, I would trust the word of a cop over a criminal any day of the week.

Stop bashing cops. Oh, wait. You only hate them when you don’t need them. Cops are only good when they’re saving you, but you don’t care. So, have fun being on that high horse while you can. There may be a day when you need them, but they won’t be there because of people like you.

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