In case you're interested, I (finally) added a search tool on the right side of the blog if you want to find anything you'd seen one time or another. I'm trying to come up with a better way to tag my posts, and create some sort of archive for the recipes I've featured. From the Christmas Eats, some of the dishes (the ones that weren't mine) have the recipe linked by name.
First up for the family meals is a polish soup that's present at most holidays. This is the mushroom-based Christmas version, likely the Easter one will follow around then :) Alot of this is "to taste," as you see in the recipe that mom had from my grandmother (click to enlarge)...
Umm, yeah :) Do you see any amounts or measurements?? I wondered if it was invisible ink, but no such luck. Mom guided me a bit, and I guesstimated the amounts I put in... and after some tasting and adjusting, it came out JUST like my great grandmother and grandmother used to make it, I was thrilled!!!
Reczek family recipe
~1/2c dried mushrooms
4c boiling water
scant 1T oil (I think i used smart balance oil, for a mild-flavored fat)
1/2c minced celery
1/4c minced onion
4c "kielbasa water" (water used to cook kielbasa, with the fat skimmed off- can be kept in the freezer)
3/4c evaporated milk
1 bay leaf
3 mushroom bouillon cubes
~1/4t dried dill
barley (?? we forgot about this until afterwards... but i think it's supposed to go in ;) )
Pour boiling water over dried mushrooms (or drop them in), cover with lid or saran wrap, and let sit for ~30min. Once they are reconstituted, roughly chop mushrooms (I ran my knife through 3 or 4 times). Reserve some of this liquid (I probably kept 1/4c or so out, but the exact volume isn't important) and mix well with 3T flour.
Add oil to large pot over medium-low heat. Saute onions and celery until softened, but don't brown them! Add remaining ingredients (the water-flour mix last) and adjust to taste. Be careful adding the mushroom liquid, as there may be some sediment at the bottom from the mushrooms that doesn't need to go into the soup. We also added one bouillon at a time, as the amount needed may vary depending on the mushrooms and broth (or water) that are used. I prepared this ahead of time and just kept it on low heat until the rest of dinner was ready! The flavor will deepen as everything comes together. Enjoy!