Meatless Meals 4: Broccoli Cheese Soup

When You Think “Lenten Meals” — Think Vegetarian!

As a family, Lenten Meals to us are an opportunity to enjoy “meatless” meals.  And, I do mean — ENJOY!  During the Lenten Season, we make an effort to eat “meatless” two times a week — on Wednesdays and Fridays.  I will do my best to post some of our favorites during these next few weeks!

Growing up in a four row-home complex surrounded by family members (through birth & adopted)…. grandmothers, aunts, uncles and cousins…. during the time when every Friday was meatless, I have many a recipe for “meatless” / “lighter” meals.  Many are the “normal” fare…. Macaroni & Cheese, Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, Spaghetti in a meatless red sauce, Fish Dishes, Egg Dishes, Crepes (palacinka)….. But, some are very “ethnic” in nature.  As you will notice as I share them with you through my posts.  I expect at times, you may be taken back asking yourself —- “Really?”  As to the likes of our Slovenian “Turnip Pie” for example.  And, then you will make it, taste it and delight in its deliciousness!

Here’s our favorite recipe for…

Broccoli Cheese Soup

  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 Tablespoons butter, melted
  • 4 Tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 2 cups vegetable broth, homemade or store-bought
  • 1 small head of broccoli, washed, cutting mainly, bite size, florets for the soup      (you can buy the florets at your local grocery and use the stems if you wish)
  • 1 cup carrot, julienne thinly or grate
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 8 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

In a saute pan, melt your butter and saute the onions.  Set aside.
Melt the additional butter in the same pan and whisk in the flour for approximately 5 minutes.
Stirring constantly, slowly add the half and half.
Cook for approximately another 1 – 2 minutes.
Then, add the vegetable broth — as you continue to whisk the ingredients together.
Reduce your heat and simmer this for approximately 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, add the sautéed onions, broccoli florets and carrots.
Cook over a low heat until the vegetables are tender.
Approximately, 20 – 25 minutes.

Taste and add salt and pepper to your preference.

At this point some people like to puree it in a blender or use your infuser blender (my favorite!).
We just eat it like this because the florets are bite size.

The soup should be a nice consistency.
Over low heat, now add the shredded cheese stirring until it is well blended.

Serve it in a hollowed out mini round bread or just serve it with some delicious crusted bread!

Top with a little of the shredded cheese and as always…..

Enjoy!

 

Serve with some delicious crusted bread ;)
Serve with some delicious crusted bread 😉

Meatless Meals 3: Mary Ann’s Crab Imperial

Meatless Meals 3: Lenten Meals: Mary Ann’s Crab Imperial – Adapted from a coveted Cossie Snyder’s recipe!

During Lent, it was a given, Cossie Snyder’s in Allentown, Pennsylvania is where you would find Bob, our girls, my mom and myself on a Friday night.  Marie Geletkanych, co-owner with her husband, would wait on our table.  A lovely woman, knew us by name and we always ended our meal with the most delightful of conversations.  And, some Irish coffee!  :)!

Enjoying Cossie Snyder’s because of Marie’s hospitality was one thing but, another…. they had good food!  Lobster tails, fish, crabcakes, Crab Imperial — were some of our favorites on their menu.  Mom always got breaded fish, the girls and I enjoyed their Lobster tails!  To this day, I will say — It was the best or could compete with any lobster tail in our area or anywhere we have eaten to date.  The reason I say that…. they knew how to make them!   They were perfect!  Not undercooked and not over cooked — and, always served with drawn butter!

Bob’s favorite, on the other hand, was their Crab Imperial.  He loved it so much I would call Marie right before New Year’s Eve and she would make some for us to serve at our annual New Year’s Eve – Make A Favorite Food Wish – Feast at our house.

Cossie Snyder’s has since closed and to find Crab Imperial anywhere is a difficult task to say the least.  I’ve searched for recipes and recently found an article and some notes in our local newspaper — The Morning Call.  Google it — it was fun to read!

************************************************************************************
The Morning Call – March 11, 2009

The Recipe You’ve Been Waiting For — Crab Cake Recipe finally Revealed
By Diane Stoneback

Marie Geletkanych always said she’d take her recipe for crab cakes — a signature dish at the former Cossie Snyder’s Corner in Allentown — with her to the grave. She closely guarded her secret during the 34 years she and her husband Robert owned the seafood and steak restaurant at Seventh and Washington streets. She made the crab cake mixture early in the morning, before anyone else was in the kitchen. Not even Robert, who cooked everything else on the menu, was entrusted with making the crab cakes.

1 lb. jumbo lump crab meat (fresh or pasteurized)
2 stalks of celery grated (about 1/3 cup)
1/4 cup grated sweet onion
4 slices fresh white Wonder bread, crusts removed and then cut into very small cubes
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning
2 Tbsps. parsley flakes
2 tsps. Worcestershire sauce
2 hard-boiled eggs, shelled and then grated
5 Tbsps. Hellman’s mayonnaise
1 egg, raw for breaded crab patties,
you’ll also need:
Flour
One beaten egg
Bread crumbs.
Gently sort through the crab to find and remove any shells.

************************************************************************************
And, there it was!!!!   Right before everyone’s eyes!  In Black and White!!  Such excitement!  People in our area got sooooo excited!  Here’s another note I found:

************************************************************************************
The Morning Call March 18, 2009

Crab Cake Recipe Prompts Store Rush
By Marion Callahan

Heckenberger’s Seafood in the Allentown Farmers Market sold a week worth’s of fresh lump crab meat in one day, and owner Ray Adams knows the reason behind the rush. Adams said customers lined up for crab meat last Thursday, eager to make Cossie Snyder’s crab cakes, a coveted recipe that was revealed in last Wednesday’s Morning Call. Marie Geletkanych’s crab cakes were a signature dish at the former Cossie Snyder’s Corner in Allentown. She closely guarded her secret recipe during the 34 years she and her husband Robert owned the restaurant at Seventh and Washington streets.
************************************************************************************

Sweet story……
But, back to the Crab Imperial!!!

NOW I HAD A Recipe…… for crab cakes!  Not, Bob’s Crab Imperial……
So, I improvise!  I Create!  🙂

Basically, it’s the same recipe with a few, slight changes.

Mary Ann’s Crab Imperial – adapted from a coveted Cossie Snyder’s recipe

1 can jumbo lump crabmeat, picked through for shells
2 stalks celery, grated ( approximately 1/3 cup)
1/4 cup sweet onion, grated
4 slices fresh white bread, crusts removed, cut into very small cubes
or non seasoned bread crumbs / panko
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
2 Tablespoons parsley flakes, minced
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 eggs, hard-boiled, shelled and grated
5 Tablespoons mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Mix all of the ingredients into a large bowl.
Butter individual baking dishes and fill 3/4 full.

Mom's Crab Imperial pic
Mary Ann’s Crab Imperial – Before 😉

Bake in a 375 degree oven until a light, bubbly, golden brown!

Mary Ann's Crab Imperial - After
Mary Ann’s Crab Imperial – After 😉

Enjoy!  Enjoy!

Oh….. End of story…..  Bob Loves it!  :)!

Bucca – What?!? Palacinkas – Meatless Meals 2

What is Bucca????
My Goodness…what an odd name lol!

Well, let’s start with the Palacinka! Maybe some of you have heard of this one…

A Palacinka / Palatschinke is a thin crêpe-like variety of pancake common in Central and Eastern Europe. (see more at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palatschinke )

There are many different names or ways to spell palacinka! Check some of these out below!

Palacinka wiki pic

Did you figure out why I spell it palacinka? Our heritage is Windish/Slovenian. We make a lot of our foods with Slovenian, Croatian, Hungarian, Yugoslavian and Slovakian influences in mind. My Great Grandmother came to Ellis Island from Yugoslavia when she was 23 years old. Her name can be found at Ellis Island in New York. But that’s another story. 😉

Oh the many things we learned from Great Grammy, Grammy and family!

We learned to eat really well!!! LOL!! ❤

So…..Anyway…..

As a meatless meal during Lent or really anytime of year (because we love it so much), Grammy and Mom would make us palacinkas. These amazing thin crepe-like pancakes were filled with any jelly or jam we chose. For mom, dad and Grammy, they would have a cheese filling. Oh and don’t forget to cover them with some powdered sugar! 😉

What an easy meatless meal it was too! I’ll give you the recipe later lol!

Now that you know what palacinkas are….

Bucca—–What?!?!?!

Bucca is always a favorite in our home! Jackson absolutely loves it! Who am I kidding? I absolutely love it too! Now…

Take the same recipe that I will give you shortly and rip them up in the pan! Then cover it in pancake syrup or a syrup of your choice! Oh YUM!!! I love palacinkas and bucca soooooo much that I have an inner struggle every time I make them just because I don’t know which way I want to eat them! They’re both soooooo good!!!!!! YUM!!!!!

Ok, ok….Here’s the recipe 😉

Palacinka

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 egg
  • splash of vanilla (shhhhh)
  • butter to lightly coat the pan between palacinkas (I don’t bother when I use my crepe pan after the first couple, because it has become “seasoned”)
  • choice of jellies/jams

Combine the 1st 4 ingredients and whisk well, try to get rid of all the lumps. Ah….I throw it all in a blender now just to mix them well. Makes for easy cleanup too. It will be a thin batter, if it is a little thick you can add a little more milk. Then pour roughly a 1/4 cup of the batter into a crepe pan or small nonstick pan. Swirl pan around til the batter covers the entire bottom of the pan. Then when edges brown slightly and you start to see some bubbles (similar to making pancakes), flip with a thin spatula and lightly brown the other side. When both sides are lightly browned…place on a plate, fill with favorite jelly/jam, roll it up and dust with powdered sugar! Enjoy!!!

You can keep them covered with foil and warm on a low temperature in the toaster oven until everyone is ready to eat. 😉

I literally flip the palacinkas in the air…learned how in 8th grade and have been flipping ever since! Jackson gets a kick out of it every time! 😉

Making Palacinkas in the crepe pan ;) (Just flipped)
Making Palacinkas in the crepe pan 😉 (Just flipped)
This is how Palacinkas look on the plate...now just fill with your favorite Jam or Jelly and roll up ;) Sprinkle powdered sugar too!
This is how Palacinkas look on the plate…now just fill with your favorite Jam or Jelly and roll up 😉 Sprinkle powdered sugar too!
Jackson likes to roll them up and dip them in pancake syrup! ;)
Jackson likes to roll them up and dip them in pancake syrup! 😉
Bucca - All cut up and smothered in Pancake syrup ;) Yum!
Bucca – All cut up and smothered in Pancake syrup 😉 Yum! Grammy used to make it this way for me! ❤

For Bucca:

Do the same as above, but when you flip the palacinka…start to pull it apart into bite-size pieces with a fork and spatula, then when lightly browned…place on a plate and cover with pancake syrup or syrup of choice. 😉

Seriously….Making Palacinkas and Bucca is that easy. We always at least double the recipe because literally 1 batch feeds only Jackson and I for how much we love it! LOL!

We hope you enjoy Palacinkas and Bucca as much as we do! Let us know below! 😉

Jackson wanted his Picture in the post ;) He said "Mom, ya gotta put in a picture like this, it looks like a flower!" <3
Jackson wanted his Picture in the post 😉 He said “Mom, ya gotta put in a picture like this, it looks like a flower!” ❤

Meatless Meals for Fridays in Lent!

Not sure what to make as a Meatless Meal for a Friday night during Lent?

Well…..

We’ve got some ideas for you! Here is one of our Windish/Slovenian Favorites:

Cabbage and Noodles!

SAMSUNG

List of Ingredients:

  • 1 head of Cabbage
  • 1 bag of Egg Noodles (my hubby likes the extra wide ones by Pennsylvania Dutch or Light n Fluffy, doesn’t matter to me lol!) ALSO…any noodle will do 😉
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Little bit of Vegetable Oil or your choice of cooking oil

Directions:

Chop up the cabbage into small bite-size pieces. Place cabbage in a large skillet with a little bit of cooking oil, salt and pepper (we use a large stock pot cuz we’re gonna mix it all together anyway lol). Saute the cabbage until soft and lightly browned…salt and pepper to taste. While sauteing the cabbage, prepare the noodles according to package instructions. Strain the noodles and mix together with the sauteed cabbage.

Enjoy some Cabbage and Noodles hot off the stove!!! YUM!!!

Some people use this as a side dish, but we eat it as a meal! I absolutely love it!!! I usually eat way too much of it and get way too full…oops! But I do it every time! LOL!

Now, back in the day, my Grammy would chop the cabbage, place it in a large bowl with about a Tablespoon of salt sprinkled on top and let it rest for about an hour. She would then squeeze the cabbage (really builds the muscles lol) to release any water in the cabbage (the salt helps pull it out) and then saute it. Sometimes I still like to do it Grammy’s way 😉

On the other hand, my mother-in-law would boil the cabbage in salt water until soft and then brown it lightly.

And others like to put some chopped onion in too…that’s up to you!

Different ways to come to the same delicious Cabbage and Noodle outcome! 😉

Let us know if you try our recipe and how you liked it 😉

More Meatless Meal recipes to come….

Quit Smoking! Start Vaping! ~ A Healthier Transition

How many of you smoke?  Be honest now!!! 

2 pack a day Smokers…

1 pack a day Smokers…

1/2 pack a day Smokers…

Social Smokers….

Even the Closet Smokers…

    By that I mean…..

      the ones that never smoke:

  • around family
  • around work (or no one at work knows you smoke)
  • around certain friends

Why don’t you smoke around certain people or places?

Because….

in a way, you feel ashamed of your closet habit!

Do you want to know why I know this? Because I was a closet smoker too!!!  I was so thankful for having friends who knew me for who I was and who accepted me for who I was! Because around those people I could just relax! No one to go…

“Oh, she smokes? She doesn’t look like a smoker!” 

I know I shouldn’t care what people think about the things and choices I make in my life, but that’s me…I can’t help it sometimes! Some people found out along the way and didn’t care, but I still hid it at times…

I quit a few times in the past, but went back for some reason or another…always thinking “Why did I pick those dang things up again?!?!”

Well….things change….you grow up….you figure out that you’re sick of hiding that you smoke….sick of smelling like an ashtray….sick of feeling crappy….sick of smoking in general! 

http://www.shareasale.com/r.cfm?B=483706&U=921028&M=47570&urllink=

 

Woohoo!!! What a great decision!!!

I’m here to tell you that I can help you along your way! Here at LifeDesigning1, we want to help you create a healthier you! So….

Here’s what I did and it has been amazing in my experience! Results may vary! Everyone has heard of E-cigarettes! Well, have you ever heard of vaping? If you are a smoker then you probably have seen or even tried one of those disposable electronic cigarettes in hopes of kicking the smoking habit. You may have had a similar experience as I did and found that they were just not fulfilling enough and went right back to cigarettes. The little disposables were certainly on the right track but were just not there yet. I then discovered the ever advancing and technology driven world of vaping. With vaping, one can decide just how advanced you would like to get and what kind of a vaping experience you would like. You can choose from an endless selection of mods, tanks and flavors. Unlike using the old disposables, which were very limited in performance and selection, vaping allows you to remain very basic or move to very advanced.

I have quit smoking and transitioned to Vaping! I feel soooooo much better!!!!

 

 

Vaping: The process of using a battery powered device in order to heat and vaporize a liquid which can then be inhaled. 

 

E-Juice: Liquid that is vaporized when using an e-cigarette like device. Also known as: E-Liquid, Juice, Nic-Juice

 

E-Juice commonly consists of 4 ingredients:

  1. Propylene Glycol (PG)
  2. Vegetable Glycerin (VG)
  3. Nicotine
  4. Food grade flavoring

All of these ingredients can be adjusted to personal taste, we recommend a reputable American E-Liquid Company. Many of the larger venders will adjust the level of each of the above ingredients to your personal preference when ordered. I have been enjoying a 100% or Max VG blend from Mt Baker Vapor.

I’m in love with Movie Theatre Fish lol. It’s my ADV (All Day Vape)!

<a href="http://www.shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=483706&u=921028&m=47570&urllink=&afftrack=">Mt Baker Vapor</a>

4.99 usa made e juice

 

Mod: The battery powered device chosen for vaping.

The Battery Powered device or “Mod” is just as diverse as the rest of the key elements in vaping. You can have a very small or a very large rechargeable device. A simple to use device or an advanced electronic wonder gadget. On some you are even able to regulate your own voltage or wattage. The options are never ending and new items are popping up almost daily. You can even select styles to suit your taste and personality.  

Tank: The device that contains your heating coil, wicking system and e-juice when filled. Commonly these are plastic or glass and go by names like cartomizer or atomizer. This “tank” attaches to the battery or “Mod.”

The tanks, as shown below, come in many different sizes. They can hold different amounts of juice and have different replaceable coil and wick systems. The very advanced vapers can even rebuild atomizers to truly gain the vaping experience they desire. The tank system you choose will be dictated by the flavor and amount of vapor you want.  Many of the tanks can be used and interchanged on many different Mods.

The above terms are ones that I will be using in order to educate you more on Vaping. 😉

I went with MigCig’s Mig 21, I wanted a tank to be able to see my choice of Juice…but yet have a mod with the look of a cigarette. Still one of my faves by far!!!! I’ve moved up in my choice of mods since then, but always go back to my MigCig! The MigCig is a powerful little device that is just close enough to a cigarette for a beginner. It, through the refillable tank, allows the user to fill it with whatever kind of E-Liquid they would like. It made my transition from cigarettes far easier than I would have thought. I truly enjoy vaping not just for the better health aspects but I find it much more fun and less expensive then smoking. Please keep in mind that your results may vary. I do highly recommend the MigCig for anyone who wishes to try and quit smoking and begin vaping. Check out the link below if you are ready to make the change.

http://www.migcigs.net/137.html

This post gives you my story so far and gives a general idea of vaping. I will have several more posts on this topic and give more details on specific items. Please post any questions or share your experiences in vaping…More from me later 😉

What would you like to read more about? Let me know below 😉

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Please remember! We here at LifeDesigning1 are not Doctors, Professionals or Experts in this field! We are simply giving you our experiences with this topic and products. We are not recommending or suggesting that the use of these products is safe and recommend you do your own research. As with any Nicotine product, they should only be used by an adult and with full knowledge of any possible negative effects. Your personal results may vary.