Cottage Cooking Club – December 2015


This is the week of getting back to normal, so I know I’m not alone in asking you: How were your holidays? Mine were busy and bright, full of food and cheer.

Predictably, I got sick after the holidays, so I’m only now posting my Cottage Cooking Club selections from last month. Since they’re both quite light and healthy, let’s say they’re crossing the boundary from feasting to simply eating well.

Mushroom “Stoup”


This soup doesn’t set out to be light, but is meant to be almost a stew. It’s jam-packed with porcini and button mushrooms and includes an option for dumplings, which will absorb all the extra liquid, making it thick and rich.

I opted to skip the dumplings. I can make them gluten-free, but Kevin is not a fan of dumplings, so I decided to make a few changes. I halved the amount of porcini mushrooms, as December is an expensive month and I was splurging elsewhere. I added in extra button mushrooms, instead. I also skipped the fresh dill and added some savoury I’d dried from the garden. I used Earth Balance in place of butter, but next time I think I’ll just stick with olive oil. I didn’t like the way the Earth Balance behaved in the soup, never quite incorporating completely.

So, my version was a gluten-free, vegan, slightly soupier one. And it was a huge hit. I made a full recipe and froze half of it. I had to take one of the containers of frozen soup out of the freezer only two days later. I’ll likely have to take the other one out as soon as Kevin reads this post.

I’ll be making this one regularly.

Spicy Carrot and Chickpea Pita Pocket


This dish is a tasty antidote to all that Christmas eating. I used gluten-free corn tortillas in place of the pita pockets, which worked very well. As much as I enjoyed this, I kept thinking I’d like to take all the components and transform them into a stew, perhaps with some potatoes for heft. I loved the combination of cumin, hot smoked paprika, and orange with carrots, but craved it in a more bowl-friendly form.

I hope everyone had a good month or so of cheer. I’m looking forward to reading all of the Cottage Cooks’ posts.

Here are the links to the rest of the group’s posts for this month. I encourage you to check them out – you’ll meet some wonderful bloggers and get some great inspiration for vegetarian eating.


10 thoughts on “Cottage Cooking Club – December 2015

  1. Hi Teresa, hope you are feeling better, I too was under the weather- only ‘during’ the holidays and cannot seem to rid the congestion which has become so frustrating! It has made me empathetic however, to those who fall victim during the holiday season. Your version of the mushroom stoup sounds interesting, I would like to give the stoup a try but shall prepare it from the book and include the dumplings. I also loved the carrot chick pea combination but I might agree on its finished delivery where it would perhaps be better suited in a bowl with an additional ingredient. See you soon.

  2. Happy New Year! Both dishes look delicious. I think I would have preferred your soupier version of the mushroom dish and transforming the chickpea-carrot recipe into a stew sounds like a great idea.

  3. I love the idea of turning the spicy carrot and chickpea combination into a stew. You presented it beautifully on the tortillas. I’m glad you had a good holiday season! I’m looking forward to cooking together in 2016.

  4. Teresa, I cannot believe I forgot to comment – so sorry for the delay! Love how you are always able to change dishes so that both you and Kevin can enjoy them. I still have not gotten around to making the Mushroom stoup but I am set on doing so asap. The Carrot and chickpea combo was a huge hit with the kids and I believe that once in a while I will prepare it for them following Hugh´s recipe – but turning it into a stew also sounds great!
    Thank you for a wonderful and inspirational post – always enjoy my visits to your lovely blog!

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