Sometime last year I was at the library looking at their new books and I was picking up cook book after cook book and then older gentlemen next to me must have noticed because he said to me.
Did you know the average household has 15 cookbooks?
I thought about it for a second and said I think that’s about right! I should be getting to 15 any day now.
And then I went home and counted my cook books. 17.
And now almost a year later? Over 20. I <3 cook books. I have a bunch a lot from different chefs a lot from the same, some specialty cook books and of course ones meant for little mouths.
B says I’m a cook book hoarder and I’m okay with that. It’s so fun going through different books and finding something amazing to make for my family.
My latest book is Rachel Ray: My Year in Meals. Flip it over and it becomes John Cusimano: My Year in Cocktails! I love two for ones 🙂
As soon as I got it I began looking through the book to see what I would make first. I almost immediately decided to make the Smoked Beef Ragu with Pappardelle. I changed a couple of things up mainly the “smoked” party but it still came out absolutely delicious! I loved the Pappardelle pasta! I had never had it before.
I also browsed through John Cusimano’s side just to tease my self a bit! The Ginger Snap sounds great for this season!
I loved that Rachel Ray did this cook book. It was cool to not only see what she actually cooks in her kitchen but also what she was doing throughout the year. It is such a fantastic idea and I encourage you to not only try a recipe from her book (I’ll provide a jumping off one here so you can get a little taste) but also making your own little Year in Meals cook book! How fun would that be for gifts next year!?
- In a large soup pot or Dutch oven, heat the EVOO over medium-high heat.
- Add the vegetables as you chop them.
- Season with Salt and Pepper
- Add the bay leaves and herb bundle, partially cover and cook to soften the vegetables, stirring occasionally about 10 minutes.
- Add the wine and cook until almost evaporated, then add the stock and bring to a boil.
- Meanwhile in a saucepan, melt the butter over medium to medium-high heat.
- Whisk in the flour for for a minute. The whisk in the milk and season with salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste. Cook until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon then stir the sauce into the spoon.
- To make the croutons: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet heat the EVOO and butter over medium to medium-high heat. Add the garlic and swirl in a minute, then add the bread and toast to golden, stirring occasionally. Transfer to a baking sheet and sprinkle with the cheese. Bake to set the cheese and dry out the croutons for 10-12 minutes.
- Serve with the soup.
If you’re interested in trying this recipe or any other recipe in Rachel Ray’s: My Year in Meals email me at Christa (at) LittleBGCG.com, I would love to have you guest blog it here!