Comfort Foods Kind of Day...

For the two days, it has been rainy and chilly. This put me in the mood for some comfort food. I  had to pull out my Comfort Foods Cookbook by Gooseberry and find some yummy things to make. I wanted to make everything but decided on Italian Bread and Slow Cooker Potato Soup. 

I was very glad that the recipe I used for the Italian Bread made 3 loaves! I was able to freeze two for other meals...I love being able to plan ahead. Here are the recipes...you have to make them! I stated out with the potato soup because it takes a few hours to make and fresh bread is always the best when right out of the oven! 

Slow Cooker Potato Soup:

6 potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 onions, chopped (I only used 1/2 of a lg onion)
1 carrot, sliced (After I sliced the carrot up, I put it in my food chopper to make it fine.)
1 stalk celery, sliced (did not have)
4 cubes chicken bouillon
1 T. dried parsley
5 c. water
1/2 t. pepper
1 T. salt (I only used 1/2 T.)
1/3 cup butter, melted (I used 1/4 cup light butter)
12-oz. can evaporated milk (did not have - used about 3 cups fat-free milk with 6 T. flour)

Combine all ingredients except milk in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on high setting for 3 to 4 hours, or on low setting for 10 to 12 hours. Stir in milk during last hour of cooking. Serves 6

I would recommend cooking on low...so much better when it has been cooking all day long. 

Italian Bread: 

2 envs. active dry yeast
2-1/2 c. water
2 t. salt
1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. sugar
7 c. all-purpose flour (I used bread flour)
1/4 c. cornmeal
1 egg white
1 T. cold water

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in very warm water, between 110 and 115 degrees. Stir in salt, oil and sugar. Add flour; mix well. 

Shape into a ball and place in a well-oiled bowl, turning to coat well. Cover and let rise until double in bulk, about one hour. Punch down. Divide into 3 equal parts; shape into loaves.

Place loaves crosswise on a greased baking sheet that has been sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover; let rise for 30 minutes.

Make 4 diagonal slices in top of each loaf. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes. Whisk together egg white and cold water; brush onto loaves. Bake for additional 5 minutes. Makes 3 loaves. 

{I only baked the bread for about 18 minutes and then I brushed with the egg white and water mixture. I then let it bake for another 7 minutes.}

As you can see, recipes are only guidelines. You can try add your own twist! I will say that I will cook the potato soup longer and then add herbs to the bread.


After dinner, Nathan and I painted half of the laundry room! We were able to get a nice first coat put on and I will try to get the second coat up tomorrow during one of Hailey's naps. We shall see! (Pictures will come later.) 

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