So, adventures in Pixie Paradise are going to be just delicious, I'm sure...but the cruel reality of such items as;
1. Unpacking items other than kitchenware
2. Having to repair a burst pipe on the first night in Pixie Paradise
3. Waking up with a head cold at 02:30 this morning
have kept me from showing you the photos of the new kitchen! Well, with a stuffy nose, but a happy heart, I must show you what it looks like outside my front door right now...by way of explaining what I made today...
I differ from other family members in that I forego the traditional two-pot method, and have whittled it down to a one-pot, speedier version. I also stray from what some may view as a more traditional lemon-mint Portuguese Canja, and stick with the tomato based version that I cut my teeth on. I know my Nana is no longer with us, but I bet she'd smile big-time, if she knew that even MENTIONING that you are making Canja to a member of my family, starts an out-of-control cascade of all of us making it! It is also one of those soups that you must eat until you need a nap, or keel over. It is comforting and tasty, without being too rich. Here's how I make my version....
I place one to two inches of water in a pot (this portion is small, as it is for me, and my cold, only)...and add a small onion, sliced thin. This soup is easy to modify based on how many you are serving, simply double or triple the amounts of everything. Bring the water to a boil, then turn down and simmer, until the onion begins to get tender...the start looks like this
Once your onions have started to get a little tender, place the chicken in the pot, cover and cook until no longer pink on the exterior...like so...
You may cover the pot during this five to ten minutes, to hasten the process. Then, add the following to the pot; one small can of tomato sauce, one quarter cup of ketchup, four teaspoons of chicken bouillon, and four cups of water. Add a little salt and pepper to taste, and crank up the heat...here is what it looks like once the tomato products are added....
Cook for another 10 to 15 minutes, just long enough to keep the chicken flavor flowing into the tomato broth. Serve over rice in a mug or bowl. The results?
A squeeze of fresh lemon (none of that bottled stuff - Off with their heads!)
A shot of good Port
Shredded fresh Parmesan (none of that barf-a-roni in a can, please)
I'm sure that it is more than just a simple tomato-rice-chicken soup to me....it is my Nana! Laughing and talking to my Mother in rapid Portuguese in the kitchen (they stopped when my precocious little self started understanding what they were talking about!), giving us treats and kisses, and generally being the best female role models a young Portuguese-American Princess like myself could hope for. More on THAT nickname later..
What dish takes you right back to your childhood? What memories does it bring you?
Eat well my friends, and cherish family memories right along with the recipes that became part and parcel of who you are. Love and kindness to all,