Friday, September 14, 2012

12.3 and Velveeta cheese!!

Today, has been a good day for me. I woke up, (late I may add) for blood work this "morning", more like 11, and got dressed as fast as possible, and sprayed some perfume on and me and my mom head out the door. Onto St.Lukes we went, into the Md Anderson wing, and with no hesitation, I wrote my name on the piece of paper I see twice a week, with all the blacked out names ahead of mine, then scribbled in Ravi, my doctors name, right next to it. Mrs.Mary opened up the sterile package with the little blue butterfly needle in it, and swiftly stuck it into a big purple vein in the top of my hand. This time, it seemed like it took forever. The blood just barely trickled into the tubes, but she only had to stick me once. That's ALWAYS a plus. A few hours later, Pat, the sarcoma front desk nurse, called me with a wonderful result, 12.3. Which is 3 points higher than before my transfusion. 
We came home, laid around a while, still recovering from the late night before. Then we drove down to Bethel Baptist church to help a good friend of ours set up her daughter's baby shower. (cowboy themed, adorable!) I had the main task of setting up the candy table. Sooo much fun. There were galvanized buckets, and baskets, tiny hay bales, and a TON of candy to lay out. Even individual bags of blue cotton candy to help portray the "it's a boy" theme. We had a good time, chit chatting, setting up, and oohing and aahing at the cute baby clothes on the "clothes line". 
Soon after the baby shower set up, me and my mom were absolutely starving! So, we had bought, the night before, everything to make my famous broccoli cheese soup. And of course, I'm giving out the recipe.

Jessica's Famous Broccoli Cheese Soup

1 bag frozen broccoli florets (don't use the pieces, because those end up tough and hard to chew)
1 box chicken broth (or veggie broth, I always use chicken, low sodium)
1 medium onion, chopped fine
2 tbls vegetable oil
1/4 cup flour
1 block Velveeta cheese (the big one, chopped into manageable sized cubes)
3 cups whole milk
1-2cups water
2 tbls cornstarch
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2teaspoons turmeric 
Salt and pepper to taste
--First, get a nice stock pot and your oil hot, add in onion, and sauté until translucent. About 5 minutes. You can go longer depending on your preference of cooked-ness. Sprinkle with flour, and stir around well.
--Drop in your frozen broccoli florets, and pour about half of your broth over it
And cover for a few minutes, maybe 10 or so. Cook broccoli until very soft, and falling apart. 
--Uncover, and mash broccoli with either a potato masher, or just a big spoon.
Season with salt and pepper.
--Once your broccoli is completely broken apart in small pieces, drop in your Velveeta cubes slowly, and stir them around until they're melted, do this in increments so you don't overcrowd the pot. 
--When finished adding Velveeta, add the rest of your broth, and milk. Stir around and make sure everything is melted, and mashed to your liking. 
--Now, make yourself a cornstarch slurry. This consists of getting your cornstarch and mixing it with a few teaspoons of warm water. (maybe 4 or 5 teaspoons.) just make sure the mixture is smooth, not at ALL lumpy, and slowly pour it into the simmering cheesy soup. Stirring all the while. You'll see the soup start to thicken quickly. 
--Let the soup simmer about 10 minutes or so, and enjoy! 

We ate ours with my "grab by the handful" oyster crackers as croutons. Quite delicious I might add!!! 

Hope y'all enjoy this easy soup. We love it this time of year, it's simple, tasty, and so fulfilling.

I'll write again tomorrow evening after our trip to the cooking expo! Paula Deen, here we come!

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