mushroom soup 1

condensed cream of mushroom soup

We had an abundance of mushrooms in the Kootenay Spice kitchen this past weekend, half of which were starting to get old & we knew we had to do something with them soon! Coincidentally, we were planning a pork roast in mushroom sauce and lo & behold, we were out of condensed cream of mushroom soup in the cupboard!

We’ve used this simple mushroom soup recipe many times before and have always had great results. We have used white button mushrooms for this post, and have also found dried shitake to be a good choice in a pinch. Any type of mushroom should do, whatever you have on hand.

This recipe will make about 500ml of condensed soup and requires:

mushtoom soup ingredients

1 pound (450g) mushrooms
1 can (370ml) evaporated milk
2 Tbsp butter or margarine
2 Tbsp flour
1.5 tsp Worcestershire sauce
up to 2 cups cream or milk (optional – for making soup)
salt & pepper to taste

Chop the onions into small pieces. We tend to like larger chunks of mushroom and cut many of them into large slices. You may wish to chop your mushrooms into smaller pieces than we have in these photos.

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Melt the butter in a large saucepan and fry the mushrooms on medium-low heat until they are beginning to turn soft.

mushtoom roux

Add the flour and create a roux out of the sautéed mushrooms. Heat about 5 minutes, stirring constantly.

mushroom soup pre-condensed

Slowly stir in the evaporated milk. Continue stirring until heated through.

mushroom soup condensed

Reduce the burner to low and continue stirring until the soup begins to thicken to the consistency of condensed soup.

Remove from heat. You can make soup right away (read below for directions), or let cool and keep some of the concentrate in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days. Use the condensed soup as if it came right from the store! Pork chops, pastas, hamburger & potatoes, whatever you’d normally use cream of mushroom soup for.

cream of mushroom soup

mushroom soup 2

In a medium saucepan, combine 2 parts condensed mushroom soup with 1 part cream or milk. Add more cream or milk if you would like a thinner soup. Heat thoroughly, stirring frequently. Add salt to taste.

Serve with a sprinkle of fresh cracked pepper & crackers (optional).

Enjoy!

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Irish cream liqueur

If you have followed Kootenay Spice’s Facebook page from the very beginning, you may recognize this Irish cream liqueur recipe as the very first one we ever posted, even before we had started up our blog!

Irish cream liqueur is perfect for celebrating with friends and family over Christmas or cuddled up with a loved one on a cool, stay inside, cozy winter day.

This recipe will fill about 3/4 of a 26oz bottle and requires the following:

irish cream ingredients

1.5 cups whiskey
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 can (300ml) sweetened condensed milk
1.5 Tbsp chocolate syrup
1/2 cup very strong coffee

Mix all of the ingredients in a blender.

Transfer to a 26oz bottle and chill at least an hour before serving. It will keep in the fridge for about a week.

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Pour a little in your coffee, serve over ice or try drizzling some on ice cream.

Enjoy responsibly!

spinach crab dip to serve 1

hot spinach & crab dip

At Kootenay Spice we have yet another classic appetizer to share with you on the blog today: hot spinach & crab dip. This one is also great for sharing over the holidays and a tasty snack or starter anytime of the year!

As we’ve mentioned before, we generally make our own bread. For this dip we made our basic white bread (spiced up basic bread without the Herbs de Provence). We also used our cast iron soup bowls and baked a couple of custom size loafs that perfectly fit enough spinach dip for two! We also made a few mini-buns in our mini-cupcake baking trays for dipping.

spinach crab dip ingredients

This recipe will make enough spinach dip for about 4 people and requires:

2 medium or 1 large round bread loaf
1 cup cooked crab (or imitation crab meat)
2 cups fresh spinach
3 cloves fresh garlic
1/2 cup aged cheddar cheese
1/4 cup fresh parmesan or romano cheese
1/3 cup soft cream cheese
1/3 cup sour cream
1 Tbsp mayo or whipped dressing
mini-buns, bread or crackers (for serving)

spinach crab dip chopped ingredients

Chop the crab and spinach into small pieces. Mince the garlic cloves and grate the cheddar and Parmesan cheeses. Set aside half of the cheeses for topping.

spinach crab dip

In a large mixing bowl, thoroughly combine the crab, spinach, garlic, and one half of the cheeses with the cream cheese, sour cream and mayo or whipped dressing. Cover and let sit in the fridge for 1 hour.

hollowed buns

While the mixture is setting, carefully cut the top 1/3 or so of the bread loaf(s) off and remove some bread from the inside of the loaf. Take care not to pull out too much bread or the filling may leak out while cooking.

Preheat the oven to bake at 350°F.

spinach crab dip filled buns

Fill the bread bowl(s) with the cooled spinach and crab mixture.

cheddar on spinach crab dip

Sprinkle with the remaining cheddar cheese.

half cooked spinach crab dips  cooked spinach crab dips

Place the baking dishes on a pan and bake at 350°F for 20-30 minutes, until the edges of the bread are beginning to toast. Sprinkle the rest of the Parmesan cheese over the dip and return to the oven for 10-15 minutes, until the cheese and bread begin to turn brown.

cooked spinach crab dips

Let the spinach crab dip cool before serving.

spinach crab dip to serve 1

Serve hot or cold with extra crackers, bread, mini-buns, pita chips, tortilla chips, etc.

Enjoy!

spinach crab dip to serve 2

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devilled eggs

We love appetizers in the Kootenay Spice kitchen and at Christmastime the tasty little treats are aplenty! Devilled eggs are always a popular choice, as are the next few blog posts that we will be sharing with you.

We have tried many variations from easy to unnecessarily complex and as a result have come up with this simple and super tasty devilled egg recipe.

Friends of ours own laying hens and we are very fortunate to receive a regular supply of fresh eggs! They are a little tougher to peel, but the flavour is absolutely worth it!

We will sometimes make our own mayo as well, but for this post we have used whipped dressing. We find it makes the filling a little creamier, but use mayonnaise if you prefer. Chopped bacon is also optional, however we skipped it this time around.

This recipe is enough to devil 4 large eggs (8 halves) and requires the following:

devilled egg ingredients

4 large eggs (hard boiled & peeled)
2 tablespoons cream cheese (softened)
2 tablespoons whipped dressing (or mayo)
1/4 teaspoon mustard powder
1/4 teaspoon dill weed
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
dash of Worcestershire

Cut the eggs in half lengthwise. It is best to use a very sharp knife to do this, and wipe it clean between slicing each egg. This will help to prevent the whites of the egg from tearing.

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Carefully remove the yolks from the egg halves and place in a mixing bowl. Place the egg whites on a tray (but not your serving tray)

Add a small pinch of the smoked paprika and the rest of the ingredients to the egg yolks. Using a hand mixer or food processor, whip until completely blended and creamy in texture.

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Transfer the mixture to a piping bag. If you don’t have a piping bag, place it in a sealed plastic bag and cut a small piece (approx 1/4”) off of the corner.

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Squeeze the yolk mixture into the egg whites. You should have enough mixture to fill each with a heaping helping.

Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

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Lightly sprinkle with the remaining Smoked Paprika before transferring to a serving tray.

Serve & Enjoy

roasted smoked garlic caramelized onion dip on crackers smoked cheese

roasted & smoked garlic dip with caramelized red onions

Christmas season is upon us! A wonderful time to share joy and laughter with friends, family and maybe even a few strangers! Delicious food is aplenty and Kootenay Spice has come up with some simple and very scrumptious appetizers that are perfect to share with a gathering of two to twenty-two!

The first of these hors d’oeuvre dishes we have to share with you is roasted & smoked garlic dip with caramelized onion. It’s perfect for potato or tortilla chips, veggies and is also great on crackers, with or without cheese.

For this dip you will need:

roasted garlic onion dip ingredients

1 medium red onion
2 bulbs fresh garlic, peeled
4-6 cloves fresh smoked garlic (or additional fresh garlic and liquid smoke – see directions)
3 tablespoons sour cream
3 tablespoons cream cheese
1 teaspoon smoked salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to bake at 350°

Chop the red onion into 1/4 inch slices. Sprinkle with sugar and 1/2 teaspoon of salt (we use Kootenay Spice Smoked Salt) and saute in 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat for about 30 minutes.

cooking onions

Stir every few minutes and add a few drips of water every now and again if/when they look like they are drying out. If the onions stick to the pan when they are done, release them by de-glazing with one tablespoon of red wine or balsamic vinegar.

caramelized onions

While the onions are caramelizing, the garlic can be roasting. Place all of the garlic into a small oven safe dish or bowl and cover with the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil. If you do not have any Kootenay Spice fresh Smoked Garlic, add 4-6 cloves of fresh garlic and a couple of drops of liquid smoke flavouring.

roasted garlic 3

Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes, stirring 2-3 times. When the fresh garlic is beginning to soften, remove from the oven and set aside.

Once the onions and garlic are cooked, drain off the excess oil and let cool. We like to reserve the flavour-infused oil to use for eggs or quick-frying veggies. Keep it in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 2-3 days.

roasted garlic onions

Combine the garlic and onions in a food processor and puree. Add sour cream, cream cheese and remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt and continue pureeing until smooth.

roasted smoked garlic caramelized onion dip

Use this delicious, creamy blend as a chip dip, served with fresh veggies or, as we have done here, on crackers. We also added a few slices of our home-smoked Friulano cheese (which was seasoned with our Kootenay Pepper blend) and topped a few off with some additional Kootenay Spice fresh Smoked Garlic.

roasted smoked garlic caramelized onion dip on crackers smoked cheese

Enjoy & Happy Holidays!