Thursday, September 12, 2013

Crock Pot Sweet Potato and Basil Soup

This was fun.  And by fun I mean I had a whopping great time making this meal.  Let's start at the beginning, shall we?  I didn't pick the meals this week, my hubby did.  I'll be doing more in the future, but as we get started with this Paleo Adventure, he's picking the meals since I don't have a clue as to what I'm doing.  So he found this yummy looking recipe over at PaleOMG and thought I could handle it.  I purposely picked this meal to be on Wednesday because it is a crock pot meal.  Wednesday nights include ballet and jazz for the youngest girl and boy scouts for the boy.  With everyone running in every other direction, this is why Wednesday is crock pot night.

I was most thankful that when I saw my hubby's meal list he had picked one meal to be a crock pot meal. So without looking closely, I saw the words crock pot in the title and decided it was Wednesday's meal. Strike one for me.  I waited until Wednesday to read the instructions -- strike two.  So Wednesday morning I read the instructions and #1 - it only cooks for 3 hours on high.  Well, that's not so bad, I can just cook it in the afternoon, leaving my morning open to make the youth snacks (which were loved by all.)  #2 - After the 3 hours of cooking, take the entire meal and pour into a food processor or use a hand blender to mix the entire thing into the consistency of soup. WHAAA? Um, husband dearest?  We don't have a food processor, nor a hand blender.  Our actual blender DIED this year so I don't even have one of those! Strike three!  Hubby was in Philly yesterday at a conference and guess what he bought me on the way home?  A hand blender.  I've always wanted one of those.

*Take note that I doubled the original recipe.  We are *ahem* healthy eaters and the original recipe said it was for 3-4 servings.  Yeah, that wasn't going to cut it for us so I doubled it.  Nothing wrong with having leftovers either.  Recipe at the bottom is for 3-4 servings, I doubled what I have listed below.*

I start making the meal by peeling 4 sweet potatoes.  Me -- peeling potatoes.  Let's just say I would never survive in prison or in the Navy.  There were sweet potato peels all over my stinking kitchen.  I have no idea how people can peel a potato in under a minute.  It took me like 10 to peel those 4 potatoes.  I hate peeling potatoes and sweet potatoes were no different.  In fact, they were harder because they were all odd shaped and what not.  UGH!  Stupid sweet potato shapes.  Then I got to dice them!  Yippee!  Have you ever diced raw sweet potatoes?  4 of them?  My right arm is feeling rather muscular today.  5 minute prep time my foot, thanks for those instructions.  After beating the crap out of those potatoes with my big ol' knife (same kind that my kids are scared that I'll get more stitches from) for another 10 minutes, I finally had diced sweet potatoes.  Dump the rest of the ingredients into the crock pot, and cook on high for 3 hours.  I did make a substitution in the recipe here.  Welcome to my allergy world.  The recipe calls for a 14 oz can of coconut milk and I used 14 oz of almond milk.  Don't want to have an allergic reaction to add to my night!

I plug my crock pot in and off I go to dance class with the girls.  I don't bother turning it to high because it's just on high.  The switch is broken off and I just leave it on high and plug it in and unplug it when I'm done. This crock pot is awesome.  I got it for my bridal shower from one of my bridesmaids way back when, so it's lasted over 13 years and it's a huge thing.  I've glued the handle back together a couple of times and the switch melted into a funky shape before it actually broke in half.  But it still works.

Fast forward.  It's now almost 3 hours later and I'm home.  Hubby isn't home yet with my new toy but dinner should be just about ready for the next step.  I walk in and I don't smell anything.  Huh.  Maybe it's because it's just sweet potato soup?  I go into the kitchen and the crock pot isn't hot.  It's warm.  I try to turn the handle and sure enough, it's set to "Keep Warm" instead of "High."  I have no idea how that happened since I've just been unplugging it,  but my dinner is no way close to being ready to eat.  The potato chunks are still rock hard.  Are you kidding me?  Bump the crock up to high and let it cook for 3 hours.  Dinner will now be ready about 10:30 pm.  I didn't know it wasn't on high because the knob is broken.  grrrr!

Serve whatever is in the fridge.  Kids ate pizza leftover from cheat day lunch, I had kabobs, hubby had chicken.  Fast forward again to 11:30 pm, soup is now ready (doubling it took a little more time to cook.)  I break open my toy, scan over the instructions, and get to work.  I stick it in and start blending.  I pull it up and it spits a little soup at me.  Ok... go grab an apron.  Back to blending I go.  You know what?  When you blend something that is in a hot crock pot and it spits up at you, it kind of burns.  Yup, that's right, it burns. But darn it, I was getting this meal done and taking pictures.

Soup when finished cooking, prior to blending.
Finished soup.  Looks tasty!
Verdict:  I think 2 TBSP of basil is a little much for doubling this recipe, but hey, that may just be me.  It was just ehhh.  I found myself majorly wanting some crackers to crumble in the soup.  But since I haven't messed with making bread or anything like that Paleo yet, I was disappointed.  Both kids took one look, called it gruel, and made little effort to eat it.  The girl had about three bites, the boy maybe 7.  Hubby ate the whole bowl I gave him and he loved it.

Crock Pot Sweet Potato Basil Soup
Prep time: 5 mins  Cook time: 3 hours
Serves: 3-4
2 sweet potatoes or yams, peeled and diced
½ yellow onion, sliced
14 oz almond milk
1 cup vegetable broth
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 TBSP dried basil
Salt and pepper, to taste

1. Place all ingredients in the crock pot.
2. Mix around.
3. Cook for 3 hours on high.
4. Use a hand blender, blender, or food processor and puree mixture until smooth.  **If using a hand blender, I highly recommend waiting until it cools or it might spit up on you and BURN YOU!
5. Eat it!

1 comment:

  1. Oh my, what at adventure!

    I don't see any reason why you couldn't pre-cook the sweet potatoes a little in the microwave to soften them up before peeling and dicing. The peels come off MUCH easier! And if you're going to blend everything anyway, is it *really* necessary to dice? How about "coarsely chop"?

    Just my 2 cents. I am going to try this though, but probably with the coconut milk or a coconut curry like you can get in a Thai place!

    WV: Repetsc (reh-pet-skee) => the Paleo word for repeating a recipe after it was way harder than necessary the first time! :)