It’s cold. SO. VERY. COLD.
Like, eyeball-freezing cold. Why-does-nature-hate-the-humans cold. It’s been negative-something-ridiculous for days here in Central Illinois. I get it: it’s winter, so what did we expect? But it’s like we’re having ALL the winter at once. Oof.
“The air hurts my face. Why am I living where the air hurts my face.” pic.twitter.com/caLdn48Dab
— Molly Gibson (@gibsmk) February 6, 2014
It’s too damn cold.
A lot of the U.S. has been locked in this deep-freeze together, but for the entire eastern seaboard, from Florida to New England, last week was a lot worse. The region was hit with what weather professionals call a “bomb cyclone.”
I’m sure you’re wondering, as I was, “What the heck is a bomb cyclone?” If you’ll allow me to “nerd out” for a minute, the technical term for this weather phenomenon is explosive cyclogenesis, or bombogenesis. It happens when the central barometric pressure of a storm system drops VERY quickly, allowing the system to gain a large amount of energy, and thus, precipitation and strong winds. Like, snowfall rates of up to 3 inches AN HOUR. Accompanied by 50-80 mph winds. Yikes. New York got ten inches in one day.
It’s shaping up to be a long, cold winter, and it’s only January. So I hope you are someplace warm. And if you feel like making something HOT to eat, these recipes are just what you need. I hope there is something to please just about everyone here, including meals that require only basic pantry ingredients if you’re snowed in, plenty of soups and stews, and recipes that are simply a good excuse to crank up your stove or oven.
And if you’re considering snuggling onto the sofa with a hot bowl of something, you’ll want to check out this genius sewing pattern I just encountered: a SOUP BOWL COZY. Apparently, I’m into both being cozy, and creating cozies. These quick little crafts will hold your hot bowl of soup in style while you’re book-reading, binge-watching, or just waiting for spring. I’m totally making them for gifts next year in all the nerdy fabrics.
Ready? Let’s WARM THINGS UP!
This velvety, sweet-sour-spicy, umami-rich Turkey and Sweet Potato Cashew Curry has all the right Thai flavors and spices to chase the chills away. It’s delicious over hot jasmine or basmati rice.
Linda at The Organic Kitchen must be feeling my brainwaves from across the Internet, because I’m usually thinking about bread, cheese, and fig jam at some point in the day. That’s about all you need to make this Brie and Fig Grilled Cheese Sandwich. I have orange cardamom fig jam in the fridge RIGHT NOW, but I’m taking a break from refined sugar this January, so this toasty, cheesy beauty will have to wait!
This Authentic Posole recipe from Souper Chef Deb at Bowl Me Over simmers for about 4 hours. That pork is going to be SUPER tender. And, it’s going to warm up your kitchen all day. I LOVE hominy, slow-cooked pork, and all of these flavors, so this fragrant Mexican stew is on my list this January!
Hina’s 30 Minute Minestrone Soup from Fun FOOD and Frolic uses a lot of ingredients you probably have in your pantry, and a few clever tips – like using pasta water to thicken the soup. Great tip! This veggie-rich soup would be a great option if you’re snowed in, or if it hurts your face too much to go outside.
We love short ribs in my house. They are a fairly inexpensive cut of meat that transforms miraculously in a dutch oven into a fork-tender delight. Kelly Anthony of The Anthony Kitchen braises her ribs in a red wine sauce with mushrooms and fresh herbs. Pass the mashed potatoes!
If you’re into thick, hearty, meaty chili, this one’s for you. The ground beef is briefly smoked for added flavor.
I’m a firm believer that, if you have a can of coconut milk and some curry paste on hand, you have most of what you need for a great meal! This Vegan Thai Green Curry Soup from Fun FOOD and Frolic would be quick to make on a cold weeknight.
Neil from Neil’s Healthy Meals created this veggie-rich, ginger-spiked Carrot and Sweet Potato soup. If you don’t have an immersion blender, soups like this one are a good reason to pick one up. Sautée aromatics. Simmer veggies. Blend. Your healthy soup options have just expanded exponentially!
According to Helene’s recipe on masalaherb.com, Mulligatawny soup “doesn’t have any special rules.” If you haven’t had this British-Indian soup, it couldn’t be easier to get started than with this recipe.
Helene D’Souza describes Tibetan Thukpa as “usually made with chicken, veggies and noodles. What gives it the little extra is the addition of some soy sauce with lemon juice.”
Lucy from Supergolden Bakes shared this One-Pot Vietnamese Beef Stew. I can’t imagine how great this smells while it simmers on the stove.
My colleague at work brings delicious lunches, and Kimchi Jjigae is one of them. I’m a newcomer to kimchi, but I’m down for anything that looks as stunning as this recipe from Pups With Chopsticks.
I did not know that the Hatch Green Chile, a hot chile from New Mexico, has such a devoted following. This stew from Flavor Mosaic makes great use of them!
This classic creamy potato soup from Savory Tooth reminds me a lot of a classic chowder. And then, it adds BACON and CHEESE. This low-carb recipe would also be great the next day… if it last that long.
I love a good curry to warm up in the winter, from head to toe. This vibrant curry from Yay for Food (yay!) with chickpeas, kale, and potatoes would do just that. Add some naan or paratha, and dig in.
Let’s finish our list off with a little dessert, shall we? I’d like to curl up under a blanket with this luscious hot chocolate drink from Such the Spot any time.