Visitors and chowder

Our visitors came this afternoon and Oscar got to go for a ride on the tractor which was the highlight of his visit, for him and I think for everyone else. He had a great time riding and steering the tractor!

 It was really cute. He got to visit with the animals too, who were shy. They are shy with strangers but mostly they were freaked out because they are not used to seeing kids, and because Oscar is only 2 1/2, he's pretty small. They weren't really sure what he was. Buckwheat was a good boy and Biscuit and they came and took some carrots from him... and Flavious, he wanted a carrot too. 

I was playing around with the camera last night while I was playing with Douglas... he likes to attack your hand, it's a favorite game. And usually when I am focusing on something other than him, he really wants to play because he wants my full attention... always. I snapped this picture in the middle of play and the look on his face just made me laugh out loud. He's such a goof ball. How can you not laugh with someone like this in your life?

 I made chowder tonight for dinner and it was pretty tasty... we both had two bowls. I think this recipe found it's way instantly onto our top five favorite soups list. 

Mushroom, Sweet Potato, and Havarti Chowder
Source: Adapted from our life in food

6 slices bacon, diced
1 onion, diced
1 lb. mushrooms, sliced
  2 large sweet potatoes, cubed
1 large potato, cubed
2 cloves garlic, minced
Good pinch of dried thyme
1 bay leaf
3 cups vegetable stock
1 cup milk
1 cup creamy havarti, shredded
salt & pepper

 In a stockpot cook the bacon until it has rendered its fat and is crispy. Remove the bacon and set aside. Clean your pan and add a teeny bit of oil. Add the diced onions and the mushrooms to the pot... Season with a little salt and pepper, and cook until the moisture released from the mushrooms evaporates and the vegetables start to brown, about 10-15 minutes.

 Add the potatoes and the garlic, stirring to combine. Add the thyme, bay leaf, and stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook until the potatoes are tender. Season again with salt and pepper, and return most of the bacon to the pot, leaving a little extra to garnish the soup.

Remove the bay leaf. Puree the soup, but not completely, make sure to leave it chunky. Add the milk and the havarti. Simmer until the soup has heated through and the cheese has melted. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.

This is a great soup for anytime (I love chowders) but imagine this after a day outside in the cold, in the snow... you'd warm up quickly!

Now, I'm off to get a cup of tea and sit down with the knitting I started earlier this afternoon. 
I leave you with Douglas... and the cat he killed.


Soup looks and sounds delicious.
Geez, who knew that Douglas was so ferocious...poor kitty.
Dollwood Farms said…
That chowder looks yummmm-meee. I am going to make some this weekend! Thanks for the recipe!
Between you and Men In Black, I want a pug.

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