Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Usefulness of Rachael Ray, and other Snowbound Thoughts

Okay, so I'm moving this weekend and I just got hit by Denver's "Blizzard of 2006." This creates two (culinary) problems: All my dishes are packed and all my food is at it's bare minimum, and I can't go out and buy anything as all the supermarkets have been closed down.

Last night we had a little less than a half chicken breast and some assorted foods, and we wanted to make some warm soup to get through the night. We really didn't have enough broth, but we have a fridge full of wine from a going-away party earlier in the week, so I thought I could make a tasty liquid. As I'm cooking I realize that I have a can of crushed tomatoes, and I realized that I'm saved. Yes, saved.

While watching her show makes me want to die, Rachael Ray usually has some recipes that can be easily changed to fit your situation so that you, too, can have a tasty meal with some pantry staples (and really, we're down to just the pantry duct tape at this point!).

So, one of our favorite Rachael Ray recipes is her *sigh* Italian Sub Stoup. We had recently altered the recipe to make an Italian sausage stoup for an appetizer party, so I decided to save the day and make a delicious concoction that I probably wouldn't have thought of without her.

I took the 3/4 of a box of broth, juice-box sized box of stock, some leftover wine, and the crushed tomatoes to create a hearty base. I then added some cooked chicken, two carrots, garlic, half an onion, and bit of green pepper to create a "stoup." We added the last of our croutons and parmesan cheese and had a delightful and healthy meal (when our alternative was about 1000 crackers). It's not so much Rachael Ray's exact recipes, but really her methods that will come in handy in a pinch.

But please, do yourself a favor and DON'T watch her talk show.


Jackie said...

Confession: I actually really like 30 Minute Meals - she has a lot of good ideas and techniques. And real deep dark confession? Her show actually helped give me the confidence to cook (partly because she demonstrates that you don't need to be so picky about measuring in most cooking). And some knife skills, too.

I admit that after a few years the psycho cheerfulness, hand gestures and especially overexposure have started to get really annoying, but... I blame Oprah. :)

Beth said...

I watch 30-minute Meals almost everyday, which is why I HAVE favorite RR recipes...she does have great ideas and she's great for a beginner/learner. But yeah, she sometimes makes me want to stab things. *stabby stabby*

Her talk show, however, is annoyingness on a stick.

Patricia Scarpin said...

Beth, you made me laugh with your post - I've read so many bad comments about R.Ray lately that I'm not curious about her at all; some of the cooking shows arrive here in Brazil (e.g.: Nigella's and J.Oliver's) but others never do.
Of course, tks to the Internet, we have access to these things, but I've never felt like searching for her shows or recipes.

I'm sure this soup of yours was delicious and sometimes, when we are in despair we come up with wonderful things (talk about work under pressure).

I'd like also to thank you girls for putting a link to my blog here - it's an honor, really!!