Archive for the ‘Soups’ Category
Outdoor cooking, which largely entails solar cooking efforts, often attracts unwanted visitors in the form of pests. No, I’m not talking about the overly curious neighbor who still doesn’t believe that solar ovens really work, no matter how many times you have shown him.
Of course, what we’re referring to, are those creepy-crawly, little critters that always seem to find their way into the human outdoor cooking scenario. Yes, ants, beetles, and flying and crawling insects of all species, just seem to automatically arrive when you set out your solar oven, or open up the grill. That anthill might be off the side of the patio somewhere, but those little guys know where the party is at!
Don’t let pest ruin your next outdoor solar cooking experience. A number of environmentally safe cures are now available to help keep the solar chef free from an insect invasion, and concentrating on the day’s solar cuisine. New, green pest control products can be kept nearby, or, may be used prior to setting up the solar cooker for the day. Yes, happily, a plethora of “green” bug repellent are there to help you.
Take a look at how you can rid your solar cooking experience of pests without the risk of hurting yourself and others.
The All American Sun Oven, the notable offspring of the Global Sun Oven, the cadillac of box solar ovens, makes a delicious pot of chili. In this case, “Hobo” Chili, a new recipe that we wanted to try. The recipe was very simple and took little time to assemble. Hobo Chili, takes 1.5 lbs of lean ground beef, 2 cans of chili beans, 1 can of diced tomatoes, undrained, 1 can of diced tomatoes with green chilies, undrained (Ro-tel brand is good), 1 small can of tomato paste, 1 tbs of chili powder, 1 tbs of cumin, dash of salt and fresh ground black pepper, garlic and onion powder 1 can of water and a tsp of minced garlic.We also added 1tbs of McCormick’s Chili Seasoning. Mix everything together, very well, in your 3 quart, dark colored dutch oven and let the sunshine do the rest! No fossil fuels to use, no concerns about propane safety, and no hot kitchen since you are cooking outside. Discover the fun of solar cooking today!
On these cool November days, a great bowl of hot, delicious and nutritious soup is usually welcome for lunch or dinner.
Here’s a great sweet potato soup recipe that has wonderful results in the Solar Oven.
1 large or 2 medium onions, chopped
4 to 5 lbs of large or medium size sweet potatoes, unpeeled and quartered
1 cup of celery stalks, chopped
5 cups of chicken broth
3 cups of carrots, chopped
2 Tbs olive oil
1/2 tsp cumin
“dash” (or 2) of red or cayenne pepper (black if you prefer)
1/2 tsp of marjoram
1/2 tsp of oregano
1/2 tsp of thyme
“dash” of salt, per your taste preference
Before solar cooking, prepare sweet potatoes by immersing them in water and slow boil on stove top until soft. Drain them and, after letting them cool, peel off skin. For this recipe, we divided the ingredients between our 3 qt pots that fit nicely into the solar oven. In one pot, saute the carrots, onions & celery with the olive oil over medium heat until soft. Split contents into the other pot, and then add half of the sweet potatoes and broth to each pot.
Be sure your solar oven is preheated to at least 160 degrees. Place pots in the solar oven and let it boil for at least 1 hour. At that time, open the oven and stir in the spices. If the soup appears to thick, you may add a little water, but this is typically unnecessary. Let it boil for at least another 1 1/2 to 2 hours before removing from the oven. This recipe makes about 12, 1 cup servings.
Autumn is in full swing; leaves are changing and falling by the handfuls. Soup is always a great menu item, but it just seems to be more appetizing in Fall and Winter. Here’s a great little vegetable noodle soup recipe that gives a great result from using your solar oven. This soup tastes great for either lunch or dinner.
3/4 cup of carrots
1 clove of garlic (smashed)
1 “dash” of salt
1 “dash” of cayenne/red pepper
1 “dash” of black pepper
1/4 medium sized onion, chopped
1 stock of sliced celery
1/2 cup of pasta ( 2 – 3 in pieces of broken up spaghetti, or orzo, etc.)
2 tbs of olive oil
4 cups of chicken broth (we prefer low sodium/1 quart box or 2 cans)
2 tbs of fresh chopped parsley
1 tbs lemon juice
What to Do:
Use a saucepan to warm the olive oil then put in the garlic, onion and vegetables. Dash in the salt and cook over medium heat for 5-10 minutes until ingredients are tender. Pour in the broth and bring to a low boil (on stovetop) for a few minutes. Put the mixture into your thin walled dark metal pot (3 qt.) cover with lid and set inside your preheated solar oven. It should only take 1 1/2 to 2 hours to make this tasty soup.
To add the pasta, cook and brown it separately in more olive oil, then open the oven, add it to pot. Add in some of the other seasoning ingredients also at this time, like the lemon juice and some Italian seasoning, basil, etc. Close everything up again and let the pasta cook through (8 minutes).
You may want to season it further with more salt and herbs..your choice. Our vegan friends may not approve, but we’ve also found this tastes great with some cooked chicken stirred into it. This solar soup serves well with those little whole wheat crackers, or bread sticks, even cheese sticks. It’ll warm you up
AND, maybe make your day. Thank you solar oven!
You can mosey onto a mountaintop. Or, mosey on down to the river to do some fishing; maybe mosey out to a baseball game. You might also mosey on down to the market to pick up some recipe items to prepare your next solar cuisine.
I once moseyed out to check my solar oven’s meal status. Then, I moseyed back to the porch to take a summer afternoon nap on my porch swing. About forty minutes later, I moseyed back to the solar oven to reposition it to better catch the late day sunshine. Around 4pm, I moseyed out to the sun oven once more adorned with oven mitts . I removed the thin walled dark colored metal pot containing my latest sun made creation.
We were watching, “Tortilla Soup” an older movie starring Hector Elizondo, a few nights ago and became inspired to share this recipe. It’s easy and fairly quick to make. And, there’s nothing like soup cooked in a solar oven for hours. The flavor is through and through delicious.
1 onion, chopped
1 large can of chicken broth
2 Tbs taco seasoning (Old El Paso, etc)
1 tsp cayenne pepper (or black, or Cajun seasoning)
1 large can of fire-roasted tomatoes
3 generously rounded cups of rotisserie chicken, shredded
1 Tbs olive oil
2 Tbs cilantro, chopped
Keep on hand an avocado, sour cream, queso blanco (shredded) or a favorite shredded cheese, tortilla chips and a lime.
Puree the onion, tomatoes, garlic, cilantro and chicken broth together in a blender. Then, dump it into your favorite dark colored thin walled metal pot (3 qt roaster of stoneware variety). Mix in the chicken, then cover with lid and place into your solar box oven for at least 3 hours (depending on how good your sunshine is that day).
Those of us of the Catholic persuasion find ourselves in the middle of Lent. We eat our fish dinners and soups of various meatless varieties for Fridays of the Lenten Season. Tomato soup is usually made available to us when eating out. Here’s a simple and tasty tomato soup, with a little more to keep you satisfied. It’s a breeze in the solar oven.
1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce
1 tsp garlic (minced)
1/4 cup of celery (chopped)
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes (chopped)
3 cans of diced tomatoes
dash of salt (or salt substitute)
1 large onion (chopped)
1 1/4 cup of low-fat milk (2% is fine)
2 Tbs of olive oil
1 Tbs of honey
1/2 tsp cayenne, red pepper or black pepper
2 Tbs balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp of thyme
Saute the onion, garlic and celery in the olive oil over medium heat in a sauce pan until soft (5-10 min.). Next, dump in the tomatoes, sauce, salt, broth and thyme. Bring to light boil on the stove top for 15 – 20 minutes. Pour everything into a blender and puree until smooth. Stir in the milk, pepper, honey and vinegar and place all into the dark colored thin-walled metal pot, cover and cook in preheated sun oven for 1 hour (in good sunshine). This soup is quite filling and delicious. Sprinkle some grated cheddar cheese on top and make some Texas toast too.
It won’t be too long before many of us with gardens will have planted some
Swiss chard or kale. Here is a great old Italian soup recipe that we’ve always enjoyed. On a nice sunny day, it will ready in your solar oven after 4 or 5 hours.
1 lb kale or Swiss chard (chopped,rinsed & drained;separate stems & leaves)
1 can chicken broth
3 cups of water
1/2 tsp cayenne/red pepper
3 tsp minced garlic
1 cup couscous
1/2 tsp salt (or salt substitute)
1/2 cup of grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
1 Tbs olive or canola oil
On the stove top, warm the olive oil in a big skillet and toss in the garlic and stems. Gently stir and saute over medium heat for a few minutes.
Next, except for the salt and cheese, combine everything else into a dark colored thin-walled metal pot and put on the lid. Then, put it into the sun oven, then focus the oven and let things cook for, at least, 4 hours. About 15 minutes before serving, stir in the salt and cheese.
Mmmmmn…good! I can’t wait till Spring gets here to have some of this.
There’s just nothing like a hot, steaming and nutritious bowl of soup on a cold winter day. Try this Tomato Vegetable Soup recipe in your solar oven on the next available sunny day.
6 cups of canned or frozen (or fresh!) diced mixed vegetables(we like greens)
1/2 tsp salt ( or salt substitute)
“pinch” of cayenne pepper (or black)
1/4 tsp of curry powder
1/4 cup of rice
“pinch” of Italian seasoning
6 cups of tomato juice
Simply stir the ingredients, cover with the lid and place pot into preheated (160 degrees F will do) solar cooker. Cook for at least 3 hours. With good solar cooking sunshine 4 -5 hours is sufficient. Remove and serve.
This will warm you right up whether you’ve been cross country skiing or just entertaining the kids in a snowball battle. Enjoy!