Crock pot Cookin' - Southwestern Chicken and White Bean & Winter Lentil Vegetable Soup

Sorry for my lack of blogging.  I've been dealing with a severe stomach bug (myself) and then it caught on with poor little Donovan.  My stomach flu basically turned my insides outside, but Donovan luckily seemed fine, other than a poor appetite and diarrhea.  No vomiting.

Daniel has officially started working.  His schedule is actually more hours than we thought, which is both good and bad.  Bad because of the 5AM to 2PM shifts on Saturday and Sunday.  It makes me feel extremely lonely on my only days off, and he can't go to church with us any more.  Good because, well, you know, more money.  Which is what I prayed and cried over for months.

He is also working Wednesdays, even though I thought he was just working Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays.  They even want him to come in on Monday and Wednesday nights as well, which is again, completely opposite of our schedules.  He's going to see if there's anything he can do to work with the hours, but there may not be.  It would really help reset our savings with all the hours, though....

I'm definitely a glass-half-empty sort of person, aren't I?

Anyway, this weekend, in the midst of the loneliness and difficult adjustment period: cooking!  See more after the jump.

I made this winter lentil vegetable soup per my "slow cooker" challenge.

I didn't make any adjustments to the recipe except using turkey broth instead of chicken broth, since I had some homemade (from our Thanksgiving turkey bones!) that I needed to use up.  Obviously this recipe could easily be made vegetarian just by using vegetable broth.  I was really looking forward to it because I've had such good luck with lentils recently.

I also purchased a cabbage for the first time in my life.  I didn't eat cabbage growing up (I didn't eat a lot of things growing up, but I'm always willing to try new things and new variations of things I thought I once hated) and I had no idea how to cook it.

But I hated it.  I hated the flavors.  It was missing... something.  It needed.... something. Donovan wasn't a fan either.

But, it might just be me.  Maybe I don't like cabbage except stuffed in fried Asian appetizers.  Oh well - I have half of a cabbage left and I'm making a cabbage casserole on Thursday.  Hah.  The ratings on this recipe were all good too.  It could really just be me.  Still, thought I'd document the process... for those who might find this recipe delicious.

Next, I made this Southwestern Chicken and White Bean Soup.


And while I'm sure it defeats the purpose of the Campbell-sponsored recipe, I used homemade chicken stock and homemade salsa in place of Swanson and Pace products.  Oh well - I just used what I had on hand.  I actually love Pace salsa, much better than the other store brands, in my opinion.

Looks pretty gross. Darn camera, I need a good one!  Topped with Monterrey jack cheese.  It was pretty good, but I had to add some "spice" to kick it up a notch for flavor.  Cayenne and chipotle.  Donovan and Daniel both liked it as well.  In the end, I think I'll stick to making my mother-in-law's tried and true taco soup recipe, because it's just the best.  When I want chicken-based southwestern soups, I don't think much can't beat chicken tortilla soup cooked with verde salsa and avocado on top.


  1. My H works an off shift so we can save money on childcare while I'm in school so I spend a lot of my alone time cooking. :)

    I'm probably some kind of freak for loving cabbage so much, but a few of my favorite ways to eat it are:
    -potato & cabbage curry (frozen peas are good too)
    -sauteed with butter and onions (and sometimes I throw in a diced apple) and served over roasted potatoes
    -sauteed with butter and onions and tossed with pasta

    I like to cook the cabbage to the point where it's a little caramelized in spots. I could easily eat half a cabbage like that with just salt and pepper haha. Cabbage + onions + potatoes are the ultimate cheap winter foods.

  2. I'm totally seconding what ally said. I like to make a batch of mashed potatoes and then saute some kielbasa in a large pot. Once it's browned, I cook my cabbage down in the fat from the sausage and eat them all piled together.

    Bad for you. Good to you.

    I'll assume for the sake of argument that you don't like brussels sprouts, either. Here's a recipe to change your mind! SOOOOOOO delicious! http://chezlouloufrance.blogspot.com/2009/10/gnocchi-with-caramelized-brussels.html