Winter is finally here. We even have a little bit of snow. I don’t mind winter coming late this year, as long as it doesn’t stay late!
I’ve been deer hunting since November 15th, every day except Thanksgiving and one day that I took a nap for a little too long…ha! I just turned my heater on last week in my blind. That is very unusual to go this long without heat. I want to make as little noise as possible though, so I hunt with the window open, so it still gets chilly in there. Mainly my hands get cold but that’s because I’m texting or reading facebook posts. Hey, I gotta’ be entertained right?
It worked too, on November 18th I got a nice buck after Veronica sent me some emails that made me laugh. I was joking with her and some other friends on facebook about it. Finally, I set my phone down when I heard a ‘crunch’ nearby. Fifteen minutes later and I had my deer. So now the joke is to send me funny emails while I’m hunting 😉
For those of you not on facebook, here’s my deer. If you’re squeamish you may wanna’ scroll past…though it’s not a gross picture at all.Look at my nose, I’m Rudolph!! (Me, not Santa’s deer) 😉Where am I going with all this? Well, when I get out of the woods nothing beats a nice, hot bowl of soup. Today’s recipe is great for weeknights, it comes together quickly and has very little work involved. And it’s sooo good. I’ve only made this twice now but, both times I made it for friends and they both enjoyed it. I need to make it again. I’m telling you guys, it’s a must try 🙂
4 c. low-sodium chicken broth
4 oz. of diced ham (comes in 8 oz. packages, I just split one and froze the other half).
2 T. dry sherry (my preference) or Chinese rice wine
1 T. sugar
1 (1 inch) piece of ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
4 (3 inch) strips orange zest
1 t. sesame oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 green onions, finely sliced
1 c. sliced button mushrooms
2 medium carrots, thinly sliced
2 to 3 napa cabbage leaves, thinly sliced (optional)
16 thawed chicken, pork or vegetable pot stickers (dumplings)
Soy sauce, for drizzling
You can skip this step and just add the pot stickers to the soup or you can crisp them up, as I do, and then add to the soup. Heat a little bit of oil in skillet and cook on medium heat for about 3-4 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Set aside.Combine 2 cups water, the broth, ham, sherry, sugar, ginger, orange zest, sesame oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste in a large pot. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the green onions, mushrooms and carrots. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until the carrots are crisp-tender, about 5 minutes.Add the cabbage and the dumplings. Cover and cook until dumplings are heated through, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove orange zest and discard. Divide the dumplings and soup into 4 bowls. Drizzle with soy sauce, if desired.
*Note: If you’re not going to eat all the soup at one sitting, I would suggest leaving out the pot stickers and adding them right before re-heating the soup. If they stay in the broth overnight, they get soggy and tend to fall apart.
Adapted from Food Network Magazine