Soup and a Scarf

Tonight, Porkchop and I thought that she might be able to leave work early (around 7:00 instead of 9:00), so I planned to make our favorite Tomato-Basil Bisque. Unfortunately, she apparently had to stay the full time (employees can’t carry cell phones in the park, so I usually have no idea what’s going on). Having a partner who works at Six Flags is not as glamorous as it sounds…it’s a lot of lonely evening hours.

I went ahead with the bisque. This bisque is so awesome, so I’m sharing the recipe with you. If you enjoy tomato-basil stuff, you have to make it – it’s quick and tasty.

3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion, diced
1 celery rib, finely chopped
3 gloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons unbleached flour
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
2 cans (14.5 oz) tomatoes (I use petite diced)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon sugar
2 bay leaves
2 teaspoons dried basil
1/4 cup cream

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, celery, and garlic, and cook for 4 minutes. Stir in flour over low heat. Add broth, tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, bay leaves and basil. Bring to a boil. Adjust heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes.
Remove bay leaves and puree half the soup. Return to the saucepan, stir in cream, and season with salt and pepper.
Good toppings include: fresh basil, grated parmesan, and croutons.

Here’s a picture of the finished soup (with fresh basil from our plant):

The Scarf
Also, as promised, here’s a picture of the scarf I’m working on:

The photo doesn’t really do justice to the yarn, which is the Bramble colorway from Manos del Uruguay. Here’s a somewhat better picture of the yarn:

Porkchop purchased the yarn for me from Madison’s Lakeside Fibers (best yarn shop ever!).

The pattern is the very popular multi-directional diagonal pattern that everyone is knitting these days.

Yesterday’s Post
So, I know that I promised to do some restaurant reviews tonight, but I’ve run out of time. It’s already nearly 9:30, and I have some knitting to do before turning in.

However, I did want to add another grocery store to my favorites list: Mitsuwa Marketplace in Chicago. When our friend Vivian first told us about Mitsuwa, she introduced the topic by saying something like, “You know how most Japanese grocery stores have a food court?” Well, no, we didn’t, but now we do! Mitsuwa has a food court with around a half-dozen vendors serving very tasty food. Plus, you can purchase really good sushi and sashimi from Mitsuwa’s deli. And they have a bakery. And the most marvelous candy aisle. And sometimes you can catch a performance of some sort in their parking lot.

Yes, if you’re headed to Chicago, you have to make Mitsuwa a stop (it’s not too far from Ikea, if you’re going there as well).

Good night!

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