My brother, S., gave me a cookbook for Christmas that I’ve been meaning to dive into as soon as I found myself with a little leisurely time. The Flavor Bible by Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg is unlike any other cookbook we own. Instead of recipes, as one might expect, it offers flavor combinations, ingredient by ingredient. So cool! So often I find myself cooking and unsure of what to pair with what absent a step-by-step recipe. This book is just the ticket for such moments.
I’ve been wanting to make soup for a while (ok, all winter). With the aid of The Flavor Bible, I concocted a totally delicious chicken, mushroom and white bean soup in a lemony garlic broth.
To start, I made chicken stock. I’m yet to find a store-bought version that comes anywhere near the homemade stuff and so, for the time being, homemade is how we’re rolling when it comes to chicken stock in our house. I piled a stockpot full on chicken bones and one complete breast, big hunks of celery, wedges of onion and halved carrots. A few bay leaves and brimming with water, I let the stuff simmer for hours until our whole house smelled warm and welcoming. I strained the vegetables and bones out, shredded the chicken from the breast and set it aside in the fridge along with the strained stock until evening.
The trick to making your own stock, as I learned from my Great Uncle David, is to leave time for it to chill in order for the fat to solidify on the top. Then, before you put it back on the stove to generate your soup, you can scrape the fat from the top quite easily. It is far preferable to the oily skimming I’ve done in the past, both in terms of ease and effectiveness.
For the soup proper, I diced up half an onion and a few stalks of celery and sliced three carrots. Into a saute pan they went until they were browned and softened, at which point I added them into my stock pot. Then I sliced and sauteed mushrooms, adding these to the soup once they were browned along with the shredded chicken and the juice from one lemon. I minced a few cloves of garlic and thinly sliced another lemon (a la my grandmother’s chicken soup), tossing these in towards the end along with a rinsed can of white beans. I simmered the soup a bit longer, adding a generous dash of hot sauce and salt and pepper to taste until everything came together. John (using store-bought pizza dough) whipped up some breadsticks (rolled in parmesan and fennel seeds and other delicious things that he can’t recall…he doesn’t need The Flavor Bible‘s help the way I do) which finished baking just in time for us to heap soup into bowls and sit down for a cozy dinner on a rainy night.
Rachel here: Man, these are bad pictures. Between school and M and whatnot I find myself calling a lot of things “good enough”–my blog photos included–and, really, I think I need to work on this. Good enough has a time and a place and I’m definitely not knocking it in general, but I’m also a firm believer in investment, in presence and caring. So, yeah. I’m going to try to write things off as good enough a little less often. Thank you, blog, for bringing my good enough issue to my attention.
The thing is, though, that this tea is more than good enough. In fact, it’s downright good! John really liked it and so did I. It’s a perfectly simple and summery concoction. The first time I had mint tea made with fresh mint was when I volunteered on a farm in high school and it has stood out in my mind ever since as one of the better things in life. I’d never made it myself, though, and I’m so glad I did.
To a large pitcher, first add honey. I made our tea pretty sweet and used roughly 4 T of honey. You can always add more, so start with less, though, depending on how sweet you like your iced tea. Stuff the tea bags with fresh mint leaves and hang over the side of the pitcher (I use rubber bands for this part and it works great. You can see how I do it in the photo above). Fill the pitcher with hot water. Squeeze in juice from one of your lemon halves and slice the other half very thin, adding the slices. Adjust sweetness as needed at this point. Let cool before putting in refrigerator and removing the tea bags. Enjoy!
Janet here: It’s hot, hot, hot again on the East Coast and the idea of turning on an oven is pretty much a non-starter for me. While I would like to believe everyone in my family would just eat this incredible blue cheese cole slaw for dinner (click here for recipe), in fact I do have to serve up something else. This lemon chicken, adapted from the Barefoot Contessa, is mighty tasty as well as being a good excuse to serve the cole slaw. It does require planning ahead a little bit — you have to marinate the chicken overnight — but then you can send someone else outside to grill the chicken while you stand by the fan and stay cool!
Rachel here: As we mentioned this past Thursday, Mondays are now going to feature a vegetarian and/or vegan recipe in an effort to do our small part to enact and encourage environmentally-responsible eating. I am delighted to kick this posting trend off today with a delicious, hearty and summery recipe. Since it first crossed my mind to make gazpacho a few summers ago, it has been a staple in our house in the hotter months. I think my favorite part about it is that I’m never quite sure what all will end up in the bowl, making my ingredient decisions instead at the grocery store or farmers’ market as I encounter the produce. I accompanied the meal this time with garlic bread, although I’ve been known to forgo the oven completely (even greener!) and just put out some cheese and crackers. Either way, every time I serve it there are happy faces and full bellies around the table come dinner’s end.
1 large lemon
1 1/2 c. cannelini beans
5 small tomatoes (or equivalent)
1 medium cucumber
1 medium white onion
1 medium green bell pepper
1 ear fresh corn
salt and pepper
fresh mint leaves
Dice your tomatoes, cucumber, onion, bell pepper and corn. Put in a large bowl, reserving 1 1/2 cups. Puree the reserved vegetables and add to bowl. Add the beans and juice from the lemon. Season with salt and pepper and tear up just a few mint leaves. The idea with the mint at this point is to just add the subtlest hint of mint. The leaves don’t hold up so well, though, so I get the bulk of my minty flavor when I garnish the soup right before serving it. Add tomato juice as needed to get a good amount of liquid. Make sure the soup is well mixed before placing in the refrigerator to chill for a few hours. During this time, the flavors will come out a bit more. Taste before serving and adjust seasoning if needed. Garnish with a few mint leaves in each bowl and enjoy.
Janet here: The best gazpacho, to my mind, has a bit of zing to it so when I make it, I add things like Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce. (This would not go with mint FYI so I would leave that out of Rachel’s recipe.) I also like to leave mine a little crunchy so I don’t puree it all the way. Just some other thoughts to consider as you’re experimenting with this wonderful summer day staple. Enjoy!
Janet here: One of the stories of my childhood that was told repeatedly around family gathering dinner tables — sometimes to great embarrassment, depending on my age and who was at the table — was of me and my grandmother Doree’s potato salad. I really loved my grandmother’s potato salad. I mean really loved it. One day while visiting my grandmother when I was around 4, I decided I didn’t want to wait until it was time for dinner to dig into this delicious concoction. So I wandered out to the kitchen, climbed up on a chair and dug in, using the serving spoon that was already in the salad. I was a happy camper … until my grandmother discovered me and put a stop to the dining — and promptly told all the relatives who were there what I was doing. And so a family tale is born.
I’ve basically been trying to recreate that potato salad ever since. I pay attention to potato salads at restaurant and am quick to dismiss the substandard mayo-y glop that passes for potato salad after one bite. My mom made a good version, but nothing has quite equaled the ambrosia I remember from my childhood. I’m not sure I’ve recreated Doree’s version, but I’m pretty happy with the one I have created. I hope you enjoy it too. As with many of my recipes, these measurements are approximations. You should feel free to add or delete, depending on your taste. After all, isn’t tasting what you’re making part of the fun of cooking?
makes about 8 side servings
4 Russet potatoes, skins on, and diced into bite-sized pieces
1 medium onion, diced
3 celery stalks, slit lengthwise and diced
2 kosher dill pickle spears, slit lengthwise and diced
1 tablespoon kosher dill pickle juice
1 tablespoon mustard
1/2-3/4 teaspoon caraway seeds
1/4 cup mayonnaise
salt and pepper to taste
Boil the potato pieces until just done, about 5-10 minutes. You don’t want them overcooked or you will have potato mush
While the potatoes are cooking, dice the onion and celery and place into a large bowl. Add the other ingredients except the salt and pepper.
When the potatoes are done, drain and rinse immediately in cold water to stop the cooking. Add the cooled potatoes to the other ingredients, toss and add salt and pepper to taste. I like my potato salad crunchy so at this point, I take the first of a few (okay maybe several) bites to make sure I’ve got enough celery in there. If not, I add another diced stalk.
This is best served cold so make it ahead of time. I always taste again before serving to see if I want to add more caraway, mustard or mayo — at least that’s my story and I’m sticking with it.
Rachel here: Ok, so before I go any further, I just have to say that my ma makes seriously grubbing potato salad. Growing up, I used to eat it with my fingers out of the fridge when I’d walk through the kitchen. I think I’m going to have to make her make it for me when she comes out to visit and meet the baby.
But anyway, I didn’t make potato salad and so, though I’m dreaming of my mom’s, I guess I’d better share the salad that I did make. I’m calling it Spring Bean Salad, though if you live in a less temperate climate it might really be a summer bean salad depending on when the various ingredients I use come into season. Regardless, it’s a super easy and delicious dish. And, though it’s not my ma’s potato salad, I’ve still been picking at it when I walk through the kitchen all day.
3 c. cannellini beans (if using canned, rinse and dry well; if cooking them yourself, be sure not to overcook)
1/2 c. kalamata olives, halved
2 medium cucumbers, chopped
1 smallish red onion, diced very small (but not minced)
4-5 large basil leaves, torn (I tear basil instead of cutting it because cutting it releases its delicious oils onto your knife and cutting board. When torn, everything ends up in your food.)
2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1/2 c. feta, crumbled
8 oz. mozzarella, chopped
juice from 1 large and 1 small lemon
salt and pepper
apple cider vinegar
Put all of the ingredients from the beans through the mozzarella in a large bowl. Toss by hand (this is a gentler way to combine ingredients and will help everything hold up since there are largely soft foods involved). Add lemon juice, salt and pepper, olive oil and apple cider vinegar to taste. Toss well and adjust seasonings. Refrigerate for a few hours so everything settles. Enjoy!
Janet here: I have been a pound cake fan since I was a child. While I can pass by another cake for a week without being tempted, pound cake and all its buttery goodness is something else entirely. So I was intrigued to check out the pound cakes made by the Barefoot Contessa. She offers at least two versions, and I’ve made them both so I can say with authority that if you are looking for a pound cake with a difference, you need look no further than this lemon yogurt cake from the Barefoot Contessa’s At Home. It is unbelievably moist and just the right bit of tangy with the addition of lots of fresh lemon. I have served this a number of times and gotten oohs and aahs every single time, which is pretty satisfying as you can imagine. Enjoy!
Lemon Yogurt Cake
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/3 cups sugar, divided
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1 1/3 cups sugar, divided
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
for the glaze
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8 1/2 X 4 1/4 X 2 1/2-inch loaf pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper. Grease and flour the pan.
Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into one bowl. (For the record, I have never sifted a thing in my life and all my food turns out just fine.) In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, 1 cup sugar, the eggs, lemon zest and vanilla. Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. With a spatula, fold the vegetable oil into the batter, making sure it’s all incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 50 minutes or until a cake tester placed in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
Meanwhile, cook the 1/3 cup lemon juice and remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a small pan until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is clear. Set aside.
When the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Carefully place it on a baking rack over a sheet pan. While the cake is still warm, pour the lemon-sugar mixture over the cake and allow it to soak in. Cool
For the glaze, combine the confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice and pour over the cake.
Rachel here: I, like my mother, love pound cake, particularly when lemon is involved (John will tell you that I always love food when lemon is involved). This is definitely a recipe I’m going to have to whip up sometime soon. I just wanted to chime in here to bid adieu to Cake Week. What a delicious fixation we’ve gotten to entertain! We hope you’ve enjoyed the sugary indulgence as much as we have.
Rachel here: Ok, so I know I fried pickles for our Friday post, but bear with me because fried olives are truly amazing. The first time I had them was at a restaurant in Berkeley that’s now closed with a friend who I had a lot of fun with. Though much has changed in the years since then, I have never forgotten how truly awesome fried olives are. After making the pickles last week, I couldn’t stop thinking about these fried olives from yore and decided I’d try my hand at them. The recipe I concocted was pretty simple and, though not as hearty a coating of fried stuff as I’d attained on my goat cheese medallions from a month or so ago or as I got to stick to my pickles last week, John and I concurred that they were not only edible, but delicious. I will definitely be whipping these up again in the not too distant future (I’d say “near future” but I’m pretty sure I should stop frying things for a little while…this penchant for frying can’t be good for my arteries). When combined with the recipe my mom’s sharing below, I feel like we could host a sort of retro dinner party. What appetizers do you whip up in a jiffy?
2 dozen olives of your choice (I used a medley of jalapeno stuffed, kalamata and sweet italian)
1/2 c. bread crumbs
1 tspn. salt
1 tspn. paprika
1 tspn. chili powder
2 T. cornstarch
3/4 c. milk
In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs, salt, paprika, chili powder and cornstrach. Mix well. In a second bowl, beat your egg and stir in the milk. Dipping the olives first in the bowl of wet ingredients and then in the bowl of dry ingredients, add to your hot vegetable oil (you know your oil is hot enough when you drip water over it and it sizzles). Fry until golden brown, drain and serve with lemon wedges. Sooo good!
Janet here: My mom used to make this recipe, which is, inexplicably, called Empire Pate. A New York State reference? Something from Olde England? Who knows. At any rate, it is ridiculously easy to make and always a hit. I hope you enjoy it.
6 oz cream cheese–whipped if you’re lazy or in a hurry; brick if you’ve remembered to put it out ahead of time to soften to room temperature
4 oz grated cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons dry sherry
2 teaspoons or to taste, curry powder
1/4 cup chutney
2 scallions, diced
Mix the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, sherry and curry powder. Form into a brick or whatever other clever shape you want and put it in the fridge. When you’re ready to serve, spread 1/4 cup chutney on top and the scallions.
Rachel here: The other night I made, for the very first time, my favorite childhood meal: my mom’s Greek pizza. Growing up, this was what I asked for for my birthday dinners and the leftover I hoped would be mine when my brothers and I ate leftovers for dinner. I remember feeling like I had sophisticated taste buds because I was eating spinach and feta cheese, foods that weren’t staples per se due to the fact that I shared meals with G and S who, as has been mentioned before, weren’t always game for eating food that didn’t come in cute shapes. Anyway, since my mom did a post featuring this dish a few months ago, I’ve been craving it. The day that I was going to make it I felt a little bit excited all day. I don’t think I’d eaten this meal since I lived with my parents and I was nearly giddy by dinner time at the prospect of revisiting my favorite childhood food. If you haven’t made your favorite meal from growing up in a long time, I highly recommend that you do so. Cooking and eating this Greek pizza left me feeling all warm and fuzzy and nostalgic for dinners in my parents’ kitchen, talking with my brothers and my mom about our days. It was fun to share it with John, too, since he had never had it. He dutifully ate seconds and totally understood why I was so excited to make this meal. This is a recipe, for sure, that I can’t wait to make for our kid in a few years. After all of these years of missing this meal, I’m glad I finally incorporated it into my kitchen. I didn’t make it quite as well as my mom, but I still felt like she was there by the stove with me and that, in and of itself, is just the kind of nourishment we all need sometimes.
Janet here: It’s funny to read Rachel’s post because I really didn’t realize as she was growing up, that this was such a big deal meal for her. I knew she liked it, of course, but I had no idea it was infused with so much emotion.
We really are so clueless aren’t we? We work so hard to make a moment special — cooking a special meal with all the right ingredients and candlelight, say, for a significant other — and yet so often it’s the little every day moments that actually make it all matter. While cooking with phyllo dough, a major ingredient in Greek pizza, was not something I did every day, I certainly never thought the nights I served it were “special,” and yet those moments apparently were. I guess the message is we should try to remember it’s all special because you never know the moment that’s going to “count” in someone else’s memory. Good to be reminded of that, I think, don’t you?
Rachel here: Seriously? I have an awesome husband. Not to gloat, but I really do, and only one of the reasons is that he is a great cook. Throughout our relationship he has been making me linguini (almost always freshly made with his own two hands) with clams and other various undersea creatures, and every time he does, it feels wonderfully decadent, partly because I have never made clams in my life and so it’s a food I feel like I access through his culinary prowess. The other night, though, I asked him to teach me how one deals with these little shelled critters, and he did. John doesn’t use recipes; he just thinks about food and then makes it and so, what you’ll find below are loose guidelines for approaching a seriously delicious (and, to my surprise, rather easy if you don’t make the pasta) and hearty dinner.
linguini (As I mentioned above, John usually makes it fresh; this time we bought it freshly made at the grocery store)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced (depending on how garlicky you like your food)
1 small shallot, diced
chicken stock (see recipe)
white wine (see recipe)
2 T. butter
clams (we used 8 small ones per person, although John prefers using the large ones–and thus fewer per person–for better flavor)
2+ T. parsley, chopped
grape tomatoes, large handful, cut in half
Make your linguini, cooking it until it is nearly done. Remove from heat and douse in cold water to stop the cooking. If you are using fresh pasta, toss with olive oil to prevent the pasta from sticking to itself. Wash your clams. In a large pan, saute the shallot and then the garlic. Add 1/2 c. to 1 c. white wine and 1/2 c. to 1 c. chicken stock (using less will make a less brothy meal, more will make it brothier…this second way is how we prefer it) plus the 2 T. butter to pan. Squeeze the juice from half a lemon in and add the clams. Cover the pan and simmer until the clams are cooked. Once the clams are cooked (they’ll all be open now), add the pasta, parsley and a large handful of grape tomatoes. Other additions that are yummy include capers, chili flakes, or a little cayenne. Serve with crusty bread and a wedge of lemon and enjoy!
Janet here: I am a huge shrimp fan and was very excited to discover this recipe in Ellie Krieger’s cookbook, The Food You Crave. My parents loved to eat out and on Saturday nights, we often traveled an hour away to a restaurant my dad had somehow discovered in the pre-internet era in the middle of nowhere in upstate New York. Cows munched contentedly in a field across from the farmhouse restaurant. Inside, my sister and I had run of the place while my parents enjoyed a cocktail with the innkeeper before we ordered dinner in front of a roaring fire.
Shrimp cocktail was one of my favorite hors d’oeuvres. I felt so grown up munching on jumbo shrimp and sipping my Shirley Temple (later named a Barbra Streisand by my father when I was older). This baked shrimp with tomatoes and feta isn’t the same obviously, but if you love shrimp, you’ll love this. I served it over orzo, which worked quite well.
Baked Shrimp with Tomatoes and Feta
serves 4 (with plenty for leftovers)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 14.5 ounc cans diced tomatoes with their juices
1/4 finely minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh dill (I used dried because I didn’t have fresh and it was fine)
1 1/4 pounds medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
1/4 teaspoon pepper or to taste
2/3 cup crumbled feta
Heat oven to 425 degrees
In an ovenproof skillet heat oil over medium high heat. Add the onion; cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, cook one minute. Add the tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and let simmer for about 5 minutes until the tomatoe juices thicken.
Remove from heat. Stir in the parsley, dill, shrimp and season with salt and pepper. Springl the feta over the top. Back until the shrimp are cooked through and the cheese melts, about 12 minutes. Enjoy.
Rachel here: The recipe I’m sharing this week is from my grandma on my dad’s side (my grandma on my mom’s side is/was my grandy). The last time that I had it with her was a few years ago when I brought John to Connecticut for the first time to meet my family. We went to my grandparents’ for lunch and this was on the menu. I had started gathering recipes from my grandma a little bit earlier and so, after lunch, I followed her into the kitchen and asked her for this one. Chicken soup is one of the great simple foods, I think, when it’s done well. So often, though, it’s a mediocre product. My grandma’s recipe (which she would want me to reveal she learned from her brother’s former wife because she was humble like that), however, gives chicken soup all of the tlc it needs to turn around and give that tlc right back to the person eating it. It is at once complex and familiar, hearty and basic. When my kitchen began to smell like my grandma’s house, I was transported back to that afternoon copying her recipe while she chattered about how nice John seemed while putting the lunch dishes away. I could see the sunlit snow through her windows and hear the quiet calm that always hugged her home. My house smelled like my grandma’s house last night and, frankly, as I come close to the one-year anniversary of her death, it is nice to know that she is a part of my home and my new family, that something as simple as chicken soup–and with it, my grandma–can be carried and woven and traced throughout my life.
Grandma’s Belgian Chicken Soup
1 roasting chicken (3 1/2 to 4 1/2 pounds)
1 large onion, sliced
2 medium leaks, cleaned and chopped
4 stalks of celery, chopped
3 small carrots, sliced
1 parsnip, sliced
4 c. water
1 1/2 c. dry white wine
4 sprigs of parsley (plus extra to garnish)
2 tspn. fresh thyme (I used lemon thyme)
1 bay leaf
2 whole cloves (I used 1 tspn. ground cloves instead)
1 T. instant chicken bouillon
2 tspn. salt
1/4 tspn. pepper
1/4 tspn. nutmeg
1/4 tspn. cayenne
2 egg yolks
1/2 c. half-and-half
1/2 lemon (or, one small lemon) thinly sliced
Combine the first eight ingredients (my grandma’s recipes always give instructions this way and I find it nice and concise), from the chicken through the wine in a large pot. Make a bouquet garni with the parsley, thyme, bay leaf and cloves (or don’t…I didn’t, but if you are not going to then definitely go with ground cloves and don’t forget to fish out your bay leaf when the soup is done cooking). Add to soup pot along with bouillon and spices (by spices I am referring to the ingredients from the salt through the cayenne). Bring this all to a boil, then reduce the heat and cover, letting simmer for an hour or more until the chicken is tender.
About halfway through, rotate the chicken if it is not entirely covered by the liquid. When chicken is tender, remove from pot. At this time, if you have used one, you should also remove the bouquet garni. If you didn’t go the garni route, this would be a good time to find that bay leaf and pull it out. Remove skin from the chicken and cut the meat from the bones into bite-sized pieces. Skim the fat from the chicken broth before returning the now bite-sized chicken to the pot (if your chicken is on the larger side you may not need to add all of the chicken back into the pot which means you will have some very yummy meat for sandwiches…in fact, it’s so delicious that I would recommend erring on the larger side for your chicken in the name of having leftover meat).
Combine the egg yolks with the half-and-half and stir this mixture into the soup. Heat until hot, but do not boil. Stir in your lemon slices. Sprinkle each serving with chopped parsley, put some hearty fresh bread on the table and dig in.
Seriously? I think this soup is perfection. What do you think? I also think the stock would be a great base for other soups, though I’ve never tried it because this recipe is so good that I never want to not make it.
Janet here: As the older of this duo, I love reading how much cooking with her grandmother means to Rachel. It makes me feel so heartened to see the story continues even after the death of the cook.
Making soup always makes me feel so cozy. The process is so relaxing — cutting up the vegetables and other ingredients — and like baking cookies on a cold rainy or snowy day, it just makes me feel so safe and warm. This roasted vegetable soup is my adaptation of a recipe I first made from one of the Barefoot Contessa’s cookbooks. I hope you like it. As with most of what I do, there’s room for variations and individual ideas. Enjoy!
Roasted Root Vegetable Soup
makes at least 10 servings
20 ounces of turnips, peeled and cut into cubes
5 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
3 large carrots, peeled and diced
3 large potatoes, skin on and cut into cubes
64 ounces of chicken or vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
Heat oven to 400 degrees.
Put the vegetables into a large bowl. Dribble with olive oil and salt and pepper. Mix well.Put onto a roasting pan. Cook for about 40 minutes until the vegetables are done. Turn at least once in the middle to make sure all sides get roasted well.
After the vegetables are cooled, add to a blender a little at a time with some of the broth and puree. I happen to like my soup just one or two steps above mashed potatoes, but if you like it soupier, then you’ll want to perhaps use more broth in general.
Heat and serve when you’re ready. This is soup with substance, so all you need is some bread and maybe a salad to have a complete winter meal.