Creamy Mushroom Goodness… and Cake!

I hope you all had a spooktacular Halloween! Sorry, could not help myself, I am a former teacher after all! Mine was busy but not really all that eventful. I watched football on Halloween day and evening, did some cleaning and organizing, and tried out a couple of new recipes. I wanted to get more reading done, and I did do a little reading, but in the South, we are all about college football. So I could not help myself from watching it all day long.

I wanted to go to the grocery store on Friday evening, but with the Ole Miss crowd being in town for the Auburn game, it was a madhouse. I just skipped the grocery store on Friday and thought, “Maybe Sunday.” Saturday, however, I woke up wide awake at 5:00 am. Just so you know, it is the perfect time to go to Wal-Mart and buy groceries! I usually go to Kroger or Publix, but they did not open until later, so Wal-Mart it was. There were not a lot of people in the store, and when I checked out, I learned they were all trying to check out too, at the only register that was open! Ugh, Wal-Mart.

I decided this week I was going to make Sticky Teriyaki Chicken Wings, Cream of Mushroom Soup, and a Paleo Coconut Pound Cake that I found a recipe for online. When I got home from the store, and I got ready to make the wings, I ran into a problem. I bought whole chicken wings and actual drumsticks, not the sections and drummettes. So frustrating. So, into the freezer they went for my mom to use later. I did get to the grocery store on Sunday though and find the items I need for the chicken wings, so I am looking forward to that.

I did all my cooking on Sunday evening, and boy was it delicious! First up, Cream of Mushroom Soup. I got this recipe from Juli Bauer’s Paleo Cookbook. Here is a picture of the one I used:

Juli Bauer's Paleo Cookbook

You can see she is eating the wings I plan on making later on the cover! And boy, do they look and sound good. For the soup, I first sautéed garlic in a pot for a few minutes and added chopped onion. When that was translucent, I added the mushrooms and thyme and let them cook until they were reduced by half. Here is a picture of the beginnings of soup:

Cream of Mushroom Soup Beginning

Looks good, right? I then added tapioca starch to chicken broth and added it to the pot. I also added heavy cream (although she said you could use almond or coconut milk) because I had it on hand and did not want it to go bad. Finally, I added a bay leaf, and a little salt as well. I let all of that cook for about 15 minutes and stirred it about twice along the way. Here is the final result:

Cream of Mushroom Soup

Delicious and perfect for a cool autumn or winter day. I cannot wait to add this to my go-to soups recipes. It was easy to make, did not take long at all, and tasted so much better than anything you could ever find in a can. I highly recommend this to everyone! If you have not read Juli’s cookbook, I cannot recommend it enough.

The last thing I made yesterday evening was a Paleo Coconut Pound Cake. I was not really making it because I just had to have something sweet. I actually needed a treat to take to a small group, and was testing the recipe to see if I wanted to use that. I had looked at several recipes online and found this one to have outstanding reviews, and it came from a reliable source. I found the CrossFit Santa Cruz Central’s Coconut Pound Cake Recipe by chance on, guess where… Pinterest! It was easy to make and tasted wonderful. The only change I made, I did not have coconut extract like I thought, so I used vanilla along with the orange. Other than the exchange of vanilla for coconut extract, I followed the recipe exactly. Here is what it looked like when I was finished:

Paleo Pound Cake

That is a slice of my Pound Cake with a little coconut cream on top. So yummy! I cannot wait to share this recipe with all of my friends.

I hope you enjoy these recipes as much as I have, and I hope you have a wonderful Monday! This month is #bloglikecrazy, so I will try and post every day in November (except for yesterday, sorry, guys). It may just be a tidbit, or another yummy recipe. I will be going to the beach next week, so the posts may be short and sweet, but I will try my best to keep posting.

Have a wonderful Monday, everyone!

~ A

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Take Away That Chill with Paleo White Chicken Chili!

Here in Alabama it is finally starting to get a slight nip in the air. Notice I said slight. It does not really get cool here until the November. I remember being a teacher and the students wearing shorts pretty much up until Thanksgiving. I am always up for soup, however. Something about a creamy chowder, spicy chili, or yummy veggie/veggie beef makes me want to snuggle under a blanket and read a book. It is a comfort food for me. I had never had the wonders of white chicken chili until last year at a friend’s house while watching an Auburn football game. I was a little concerned about the white beans that were in the soup and the flavor combinations as a whole. Have I mentioned how picky I am yet? Imagine my surprise when I find out how much I loved it, and the shock when I realized what I had been missing all these years. It was like a light bulb went off. I want to give a little shout out to my friend Linda for introducing me to this amazing soup and call her out for her wonderful cooking skills! You gave me inspiration to find a Paleo version that was going to be a Must Have for this winter! So for that, I thank you! As usual, I turned to my go-to, Pinterest. I looked through lots of different versions before I found The One. But let me explain how I got to this point.

This weekend I made my Chicken Pot Pie that you saw on my earlier blog post. At least, I hope you saw it. I like to think that maybe, just maybe someone out there is reading this. I did not use all the chicken I had cooked for the pot pie and still had two skinless, boneless chicken breasts that I had poached left over. I wanted to use them and not let them go to waste, so I searched for recipes that could use the items I had on hand. After much searching, I came across a white chicken chili recipe. I am going to post a link to the original recipe, but I am also going to post mine because, I made modifications due to various reasons that I will explain as I go along. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did making it and eating! It tasted just a yummy as it looks and sounds! Do not worry about not having the beans, I never even missed them.

White Chicken ChiliThis was the finished result last night once everything was cooked and finished. The recipe makes four servings, so if you want to make a larger pot of soup, or want to serve more people, you will have to adjust accordingly.

The recipe came from Health Starts in the Kitchen. This is where I found the basic outline of the recipe, but I adapted it for my own use, and I will give that version for you here my blog. If you are interested in the original recipe you will find it here. This is my version, however:

White Chicken Chili

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4 cups chicken broth

1/2 large onion, chopped

4 ribs (I did one bunch) of celery, chopped

1/2 green pepper, chopped

1/2 red pepper, chopped (I did one whole red pepper because I was out of green peppers)

1 tsp. chili powder

2 tsp. cumin

1 pinch crushed red pepper

1 1/2 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp. white pepper

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. onion powder

2 Tbsp. potato starch

1 cup coconut milk (more to taste)

avocado (optional)

Since I had already poached the chicken, I did not have to take that step in the recipe where I cooked it along with all the spices. It also called for filtered water, but I used chicken broth. I took the broth, added it to a pot with the onion, peppers, celery, spices, and the chicken which I shredded.

It then called for you to simmer these ingredients for 1 hour. After 1 hour you add the potato starch with 1/4 cup of the soup mixture and then add the mixture back into the soup to combine. Let thicken for several minutes. Once you remove the soup from the heat, add in the coconut milk and serve. You may add avocado to the top if you wish.

** Note ~ When I made this soup, I am afraid I made several errors, but it turned out yummy in the end. First, I added the coconut milk to the soup before it was time. Second, I guess I simmered it a little too high because when I checked on it after 30 minutes almost all the liquid was cooked out. I added more coconut milk to the soup, that is why I said to taste… just in case you ran into the same issue. Overall, I probably put in about 3 cups of coconut milk.

I hope you enjoy this quick and easy white chicken chili recipe as much as I did. Not only did I have it for supper last night, but I brought it for lunch today as well. I can hardly wait to eat it!

Autumn