1. OK, so if you read THIS POST, you know that one of my favorite things to do is take favorite tried 'n' true flavor combinations and serve them up in new and different ways.
2. And if you read THIS POST, you know that I recently reconnected with a dear friend, Cheryl, from very early childhood.
Add 1 + 2 and what do you get? A KILLER soup recipe that she recently shared with me. It's one of Cheryl and her husband's favorites, and now, it is also one of ours!
Here's the recipe, as Cheryl sent it to me:
PIZZA PEPPERONI SOUP
2 15 OZ CANS OF BEEF BROTH
1 LG. CAN OF CRUSHED TOMATOES
8 OZ CAN OF MUSHROOMS
1 LARGE ONION, CHOPPED
1 MED. GREEN PEPPER, CHOPPED
8-10 OUNCES OF SLICED PEPPERONI (I cut mine in 4 pcs, like a pie wedge)
1 LB GROUND HOT SAUSAGE
1 TLB OREGANO
1 TSP BASIL
MOZZARELLA OR PROVOLONE CHEESE
SAUTE THE ONION, GREEN PEPPER AND SAUSAGE, CHOPPING THE SAUSAGE IN SMALL PIECES AS IT BROWNS. DRAIN WELL. ADD THE MUSHROOMS AND STIR.
TRANSFER TO A CROCK POT, THEN ADD ALL ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS. STIR WELL. COOK ON HIGH FOR 4 HOURS. SERVE IN BOWL TOPPED WITH SHREDDED CHEESE. ENJOY
WITH A HOT LOAF OF CRUSTY BREAD.....
Now since I view all patterns, recipes, etc., as only general GUIDELINES and not strict instructions (LOL!) here was my tweaking:
I used fresh mushrooms (12 oz) because I had them. I added several cloves of fresh garlic, used 2 onions, and a mix of red, green, and yellow bell peppers because we love them. I used 8 oz. of a specialty-brand pepperoni stick, cutting it into slices and then fourths, like Cheryl does. Probably went heavier on the herbs, I seldom measure!
AND I didn't use a crock-pot because my crock-pot is too small, so I simmered it on top of the stove in my dutch oven for a few hours. BUUUT, I can see how it would be GREAT in a crock pot, and super quick and easy -- thus easily meeting criteria ;o) for my "Week Night Wonder" category. I was also a little fussy about the cheese (fresh mozzarella) and bread we used (after all, it is Pepperoni PIZZA soup, the cheese and "crust" is critical!) I chose a rustic artisan loaf, cut lengthwise, and oven-toasted till lightly browned and crunchy. *YUM YUM YUM!*
So thanks, Cheryl, for a recipe we loved and will definitely REPEAT... (in fact, Barry is already asking for it again!) I will think of you every time I do.