Happy Thanksgiving

Wishing you and yours a happy Thanksgiving!  I'm away on a mini vacation and relaxation. Follow along on instagram for all the happenings.


Meatless Monday: Vegetable Soup With Leftover Ramen Noodles

Whether you are traveling for Thanksgiving and want to clean up your fridge, or are simply looking for a quick dinner to make tonight, my Vegetable Soup With Leftover Ramen Noodles is perfect. Bonus points: it perfectly fits Meatless Monday movement.

Whenever I go out for pho or ramen, I only ask for half the noodles because the broth is the star of the show in my opinion. When I went out for ramen with a friend to Haikan, they said they could not just give me half the noodles, but instead would bring the noodles in a separate bowl and I could add as much as I wanted to the broth. Strange, but alright. I used half the noodles and took the leftovers home.

This soup is incredibly quick to make, and you can use whichever vegetables you have on hand. The key is to thinly slice your vegetables so they will take a short time to cook.

1) Bring vegetable broth to a simmer.
2) Add thinly sliced vegetables and frozen vegetables {if using}, and bring the soup to a boil.
3) Lower the heat and simmer the soup for about 10 minutes.
4) Add leftover ramen noodles and reheat. 
5) Drizzle with sriracha for an added kick of flavor.

For my soup, I used portobella, broccoli, carrots, Brussels sprouts, and frozen corn. Look at all the colors!

What are you eating tonight?


Happy Weekend: Weekend To Do List

TGIF! This is the last weekend before Thanksgiving, and the last weekend before my vacation.

This weekend I'm planning to clean house, go on a neighborhood walk, and cook.

Here are some photos to inspire you to do the same.


Andouille Corn Chowder: The Gourmet Kitchen Cookbook

My friend Jennifer published a cookbook. I know famous people y'all ;) Not only did Jennifer create over a hundred recipes in The Gourmet Kitchen, but she also shot all the photos. If you are familiar with her Savory Simple blog or follow her on instagram, you'll easily recognize Jennifer's stunning photos. 

Don't be afraid of the gourmet in the title of the book. The recipes are approachable, incredibly well explained, and can be made by cooks of any level of expertise. If nothing else, buy the book for the gorgeous photo of eggs: tear out a page and frame it for your kitchen gallery wall {yes, I'm planning to do just that!}.

When Jennifer sent me her cookbook, the recipe I wanted to make immediately was Andouille Corn Chowder. Luckily, I bought all the groceries before getting sick and had a large pot of this spicy, creamy and decadent soup to last me through the weekend and a few extra days this week.

A video posted by Olga Berman (@mangotomato) on

Andouille Corn Chowder
Copied with permission

PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 40 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 55 minutes
YIELD: 5 to 6 servings

  • 1 tablespoon clarified butter or extra-virgin olive oil
  • 9 ounces (approximately 3 links) precooked turkey Andouille sausage, diced small
  • 1 1⁄2 cups diced yellow onion (approximately 1 large)
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus a pinch 
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 large or 2 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 1⁄2 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade 
  • 1 medium russet potato
  • 1 1⁄2 cups whole milk or half-and-half
  • Kernels from 4 medium ears of corn (approximately 3 cups)
  • Ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter to finish (optional)
  • Chopped fresh parsley for garnish

  1. Heat the butter in a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottom saucepan. Brown the sausage over medium-low heat until crisp. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  2. Add the onion and a pinch of salt to the Dutch oven. Place a liquid measuring cup filled with water near the stove. Allow the onion to cook for several minutes, stir- ring periodically as it begins to caramelize. A brown glaze will begin forming on the bottom of the pan. If at any point the bottom of the pan looks like it’s about to become too dark and start burning, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of the reserved water and scrape the brown bits back into the onion. Once the onion is soft and lightly caramelized, add the flour, tossing it with the onion to coat. Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
  3. A brown coating should begin to form on the bottom of the pan, this time from the flour. Once the pan has a brown glaze, add the chicken stock and use a spatula to scrape the brown bits up from the bottom of the pan so they combine with the liquid. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat.
  4. While the stock is heating, peel and dice the potato (a small or medium dice). Once the stock is boiling, add the milk along with the diced potato. Turn the heat to medium-low and allow the mixture to simmer for 15 minutes, uncovered, stirring frequently to prevent the potatoes from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  5. Add the corn kernels and simmer for another 8 to 9 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the sausage, salt, and pepper and stir for another 1 to 2 minutes.
  6. If using butter to finish, stir just after removing the pan from the heat. Top each serving with fresh chopped parsley and serve.

The soup could not have been easier to make. Although this was my first time making a chowder, it will not be my last. Easy to follow steps, normal ingredients, and a delicious final product make this recipe something I'll make again and again (and I've already told my mom and a few friends about it).

You could definitely make this soup without the sausage, but I loved the spicy kick the andouille sausage gave to the chowder. I think it'd be fun to use butternut squash instead of potatoes for a more winter feel.

Final note: I used frozen corn which was very convenient! Can't wait to heat up the last portion of this chowder for lunch today.


Meatless Monday: Vegan Cream of Cauliflower & Sweet Potato Soup

Happy Monday! Hope you all had a great weekend. I was a bit indulgent in what I ate: pizza, cider, bagel, and biscotti to name a few of my carb'y decisions.

For dinner last night I decided to eat something slightly lighter and healthier by turning a curry from that week into a soup.

Yes, you can do that!

Let me first tell you about the curry:
sauteed fresh garlic and ginger with curry powder, cumin powder and salt & pepper
roasted sweet potato cubes
parboiled cauliflower florets

I finished the curry with coconut milk and a bit of the liquid from parboiled cauliflower and a hand full of defrosted peas.

I like serving curry with freshly chopped parsley and red onion.

Last night, then, I pureed the leftovers from the curry, reheated it, and served in a plate drizzled with chili oil and topped with chopped red onion and parsley. The color isn't the most appetizing, but the flavors are great. If needed, you can thin out the puree with a bit of water or vegetable broth.

In fact, I had some of the soup leftovers for breakfast today ;)


Happy Weekend!


Slow Cooker Tikka Chicken Masala From Skinnytaste's Fast and Slow Cookbook

I love Indian food so much. Occasionally I make Indian inspired recipes at home by incorporating Indian spices into my regular dishes. When I bought my friend Gina's, skinnytaste, second cookbook, Skinnytaste Fast and Slow, the first recipe I decided to try was Chicken Tikka Masala. The recipe is part of the "slow" section of the book and was a good guide for using my slow cooker. I'm sure you can also use a heavy bottomed pot and adapt the recipe to that if you don't own a slow cooker.

Reprinting the recipe with Gina's permission.

1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless, chicken thighs, cubed {I used chicken breasts}
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 tablespoon ghee or butter
1/2 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 (14-ounce) can petite diced tomatoes
6 tablespoons canned full-fat coconut milk
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

Place the chicken in a slow cooker and season with 1 teaspoon of the salt.

In a medium skillet, melt the ghee over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, turmeric, garam masala, coriander, cumin, cayenne, and cardamom. Cook, stirring until the vegetables are soft and the spices are fragrant, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a blender along with the tomatoes and blend util smooth. Pour over the chicken in the slow cooker and add the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Cover and cook on low for 6 hours. Sir in the coconut milk. Serve garnished with the cilantro.

This was a really simple recipe to follow. The sauce was smooth and fragrant. Don't expect it to be as rich and buttery as the one you'd get at an Indian restaurant. The flavors develop and become stronger if you leave the dish in the refrigerator, and I imagine it'd be great to freeze.

I served this chicken dish along with Gina's chana masala because both dishes used some of the same main ingredients.

I can't wait to make some of the other recipes from Gina's book.