number 38

brrr! in lieu of this lovely weather we've been having, i have been in the perfect mood for belly-warming food! saturday, mother nature kicked it off with a gusty overcast day. we had some fresh veggies in the fridge that needed to be used, so after a little searching, i found a great recipe for mexican zucchini cheese soup. sound strange? it is! it's like runny cheese dip with veggies. but who doesn't love cheese dip? haha. andrew and i both ended up liking it a whole lot, it had a little bit of spice, but with the weather the way it's been, that spice is appreciated.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 (14.5 ounce) cans chicken broth
2 (14.5 ounce) cans Rotel tomatoes
2 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and cut in 1/4 inch slices
2 medium yellow squash, halved lengthwise and cut in 1/4 inch slices
1 (8.75 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
12 ounces processed cheese food, cubed
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Heat the olive oil in a large pot, and saute the onion and garlic until tender. Season with oregano. Mix in the chicken broth and Rotel. Bring to a boil. Mix in the zucchini, yellow squash, and corn. Reduce heat to low, and simmer 10 minutes, or until the squash is tender.Mix the cubed processed cheese into the soup. Continue to cook and stir until cheese is melted. Season with pepper.

i did make a few adjustments to the original recipe, only because i love Rotel and know it makes everything better! i thought the cilantro might be overpowering with all the other flavors as well. the soup really hit the spot. i love those people who take the pictures of their pretty food. i tried. i failed. my soup wasn't as pretty as i had hoped. will we have it again? maybe? i froze the rest so we'll be having it again sometime! it's so different - not something that my mother would have made.

yesterday was even COLDER! did someone say chili? yes! please! i whipped up some of my mom's chili when i got home from work. VERY SIMPLE!

1 package chili seasoning (any will do, but my mom uses this: from food lion, kroger, etc.)
2 lbs. ground beef
1 can tomato sauce
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 can Rotel
1 can chili beans

brown the ground beef with the onion, drain the fat. to a large pot, add chili seasoning, tomato sauce, and rotel. once the beef is brown, add this to the chili mixture. let simmer for 15 minutes, add the chili beans, then let simmer for another 5 minutes.

ENJOY! with shredded cheddar cheese and saltines! YUM! easy chili = good chili! andrew accuses me of never eating leftovers. this chili alone will help me prove him wrong!

what's your favorite "warm-me-up" food?


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