Cooking for the changing season

pizza soup

We woke up this morning to the coolest temperatures since last February.  My batteries are recharged, and I’m pulling out the winter comfort clothes (a nicer name for my winter fleece wardrobe).

Incidentally, did you know that fleece has only been around for about 30 years. In 1981 a company called Malden Mills invented Polartec fleece and forever changed the way the world dresses for cold weather.

croutons

But back to my favorite subject – food. Suddenly, I  can’t bare the thought of another tired tuna salad or a limp leaf of lettuce!

My thoughts turn to something I can toss into the slow cooker and leave for hours then come  home to delicious aromas permeating the house.

I found this recipe stuck in my Bible.  That had to be a sign that it was MEANT for a day like today.  Luckily, I have everything on hand except the sausage, which I’m not all that fond of anyway.  May toss in some chicken left over from Monday’s lunch.

You can pretty much add anything you like on a pizza and get delicious results (black olives, red pepper flakes, artichoke hearts, etc.)

Here’s the recipe for Crock Pot Pizza Soup

–1 jar (14 oz) of pizza sauce (tomato sauce would probably be fine)
–3 empty jars full of water (I want mine thick so probably will use half)
–1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
–1/2 red onion, chopped
–1 cup sliced mushrooms (I’m using canned)
–1 cup baby tomatoes, cut in quarters (or 1 can diced tomatoes, drained)  Naturally, I’m using Rotel which goes into everything that calls for tomatoes.
–2 already-cooked Italian sausage
–1 cup sliced pepperoni, sliced in quarters
–8 fresh basil leaves, chopped (or 1/2 T dried) I made pesto this weekend so I’ll just dump in a couple of spoons full.
–1 T dried oregano
–1/2 to 1/3 cup of dried pasta (if your pasta is tiny, use 1/3 cup. if it’s big, do 1/2. I’m using 1/2 cup whole wheat penne.

–shredded mozzarella cheese (to add later)

Directions – Use a 5 or 6 quart crockpot for this recipe. Serves 4 with some leftover for you the next day.

Wash and prepare veggies. Dump them into the crockpot. Cut up the sausage into small pieces. Cut up the pepperoni, add it, too. Add basil and oregano. Pour in the pizza sauce, and follow with three empty jars of water.  That  just sounds like too much, so I’m starting with 1-1/2.

Cover and cook on low for 7-9 hours. Everything in this is already cooked, so you are really only heating through and allowing the flavors to meld.

Thirty minutes before serving, add the dry pasta, and turn to high. Garnish/top with shredded mozzarella cheese.  I’m adding some croutons made from garlicky French bread.

6 thoughts on “Cooking for the changing season

  1. I’m going to give this one a try this weekend with the grands coming it should be a hit. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Bet you can’t guess what Tom and I are having for dinner tomorrow night!!

    Can’t wait to make the Soup….

  3. Great Soup…Was a hit…For 4 men, I doubled the ingredience and everyone had seconds. Enough left over for Tom to have for Lunch tomorrow.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Chester and Tom

  4. Hey – glad you liked it, Chester. Thinking of cooking some up today to freeze for next week when I have company. Did you put in the sausage and if so, what kind did you use?

  5. Yes, I did put in the sausage. Infact I put in 8 sausage’s to make 4 big serving and I use 4 that were Italian HOT and 4 Italian medium.

    Everyone loved it.

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