I read! I read books, cookbooks, signs, soup labels, cereal boxes and cracker boxes. If there’s print on it, I read it. Henceforth, today’s soup recipe from the back of a cracker box. I admit to changing a couple of ingredients to make it more pantry friendly. Most of us don’t have fresh thyme or two ears of fresh corn.

It isn’t imperative to use rotisserie chicken either. I usually have cooked or ready to cook chicken on hand.

Few of the naan recipes were identical, but they were all similar. Naan is a delicious change from the ordinary bread or crackers with soup and makes a delicious pizza base. Split horizontally, it makes a great sandwich.

I watch food commercials, too. Been seeing one with a sandwich made on a cornbread bun. Don’t know who makes it. Thought surely there was a recipe out there somewhere. I was right and fellow cooks, it is delicious! Leftovers will be so good in your cornbread dressing on Thanksgiving. There won’t be any leftovers at my house unless I run out of butter.

Any chocolate cake will do. This dessert is all about the frosting.

Chicken and Vegetable Soup

2 cups chicken broth

1 cup chicken broth, optional

2 teaspoons chicken base

1 cup chopped onion

2 cups diced potatoes

2 cups frozen (thawed) corn

1 cup diced carrots

1 cup diced celery

1 teaspoons dried thyme

2 teaspoons dried parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

Meat from one or two rotisserie chickens, chopped or torn into bite sized pieces.

2 teaspoons all purposes flour

1 tablespoon butter, warmed slightly

1 cup of whipping cream

In a large soup kettle, bring first 12 ingredients to boil. Reduce heat; summer 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add chicken; heat through.

In a small bowl, combine flour and butter until smooth. Stir in cream until smooth. Slowly, add to soup while stirring. Add last cup of broth, if desired.

Naan for the bread machine

3/4 cup 2% milk

6 ounces plain, whole fat yogurt

1 large egg, lightly beaten

2 tablespoons oil

2 teaspoons sugar

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

4 cups bread flour

2 teaspoons yeast

Heat milk gently to between 70 and 80 degrees.

Place all ingredients in the bread machine bowl according to the manufacturer ‘s directions. Select dough cycle. At the end of the cycle, divide dough into 6 or 8 approximately equal size balls. Roll out to an oval shape. Cover and rest the dough five minutes. Generously spray a large skillet with Pam or grease with solid shortening. Brush only one side of the dough with water. Cover and cook, wet side down, about one minute. Turn and cook about thirty seconds. Continue until all pieces are cooked. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Cornmeal Yeast Rolls

1/2 cup boiling water

1/2 cup plain cornmeal

1/2 cup warm milk

1 egg

1/4 cup room temperature butter

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons sugar

2 1/2 cups bread flour

1 teaspoon yeast

Add meal to boiling water. Stir and pour into bread machine pan. It will be dry and lumpy. Add warm milk, salt, egg, sugar, butter, flour and yeast. Select dough cycle. Check after 10 minutes. Add a tablespoons of water if dough is too dry or a tablespoon of flour if it is too wet. Grease a muffin tin or spray with Pam. Divide dough into 24 pieces and place two in each cup. Or divide into 12 pieces and place one in each cup. Cover with plastic wrap and set in a draft free place 40-45 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake 18-20 minutes or until golden.

Cappuccino pudding frosting

1 3.4-ounce French vanilla Jello instant pudding mix

1/2 cup half and half

1/2 cup strong coffee, chilled

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional

8 ounces extra creamy cool whip

In a medium bowl, whisk pudding mix, cream, vanilla and coffee together until smooth. Fold in cool whip. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Optional:Top each serving with toffee bits, shaved chocolate or chocolate covered coffee beans.

Chocolate Cake

1 15.25-ounce Duncan Hines triple chocolate cake mix plus three ounces of any other chocolate cake mix or white.

4 eggs

1/2 cup oil

1/4 cup half and half


  • cup Kahlua

3/4 cup sour cream (6 ounces)

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 inch baking pan with Pam. Line the pan with parchment paper.

Add all ingredients to the mixing bowl and mix on low til blended. Turn to medium and mix two minutes. Stir in chocolate chips. Pour batter into the prepared pan. Bake 35-40 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the middle comes out clean.

  • May use all half and half, or substitute any liqueur that goes well with coffee flavor.

Miss Olivia Sipe is the owner of Miss Olivia’s Table in Maryville.

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