Mom’s Night Out – Crock Pot Carrot Ginger Soup

Around here, the Mama needs to get out on a regular basis. You know the saying, “If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy”, and usually what makes Mama happy is great conversation and great food. My outings typically amount to dinner or cocktails out with friends every couple of weeks. There are my “super foodie” friends who point me to new and delicious restaurants, then there are the “quasi-foodie” friends who usually ask me where we should go, and then there are the “wouldn’t know good food if it fell on your head” friends, and with them it’s just best to opt for cocktails.

There are two total Mom’s Night Out joy killers. The first is coming home to kids who are still awake. Seriously, Hubs? Going through the “I need another kiss, and I have to tell you one more thing, and did you forget to change my band-aid, and I need another drink of water, and I can’t fall asleep without my glow in the dark, sparkly Littlest Petshop unicorn that has been MIA for 7 days now” routine just sucks the pleasure out of any evening out. When I come home, I want to be greeted by silence. Let me spell that out even more clearly. I want the house to be absent of all noise, especially small voices uttering the words “Mom” and “I want”. The second major joy killer is trying to get any kind of complicated meal on the table before rushing out the door.

Over the years, I have had to adapt my definition of “complicated”. Basically, anything involving more than two steps is complicated for the Hubs to pull off. So as my craving for Me Nights Out has increased, so too has my love of the crock pot. 1) Scoop out 2) Plop on plate These are 2 steps that my family can cope with. I don’t get hung up in the doorway giving little last minute reminders and being asked about what to do with such and such. I can just point to the pot and remind them to scoop and plop. Easy.

Last week, I enjoyed a great dinner out at Tender Greens with a friend. That restaurant is really growing on me. As I headed out the door, I pointed my brood to the crock pot. On this occasion, it was filled with Carrot Ginger Soup. I can always gauge whether the dinner left behind was a hit or not by how much of it is left when I get back home (to a completely SILENT house, on a good night). Well, let me just say there wasn’t a lick of anything left for me to even taste.

So here are the down and dirty simple steps to Crock Pot Carrot Ginger Soup.

Toss about a pound of chopped carrots, a large chopped sweet potato, one diced onion, a couple cloves of minced garlic, a bit of fresh grated ginger, a dash of garlic salt, and a bit of black pepper into your crock pot.

carrot soup

Pour some veggie broth over it all and cook on low for about 8 hours. Then pour all of the crock pot contents into the blender and blend until soup is smooth.


Whisk in some light coconut milk and serve.

This is where you would have seen a picture of this beautiful soup in a nice white bowl garnished with fresh basil and accompanied by homemade garlic bread sticks and fresh cherry tomatoes with a balsamic glaze. BUT . . . I don’t know what, if anything they ate it with, and the last thing I shouted as I hurried out the door was, “Take a pretty picture of the soup for my blog” which obviously didn’t happen. The good news is, I had a wonderful evening out with a friend and discussed everything we needed to catch up on. AND I returned home to a house with all small people fast asleep.

For the full Carrot Ginger Soup Recipe, click here.

Dinner for Friends – Parmesan Honey Chicken

You’ve volunteered to take dinner to a friend, and now what?  If you’re like me, this is a common occurrence. Maybe you’ve heard of the 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman. Well, in my opinion, food should really be added as the long overlooked 6th love language.  I really enjoy blessing other people with food.  But like everyone, I’m busy and sometimes when the day arrives and I get that little reminder e-mail that says, “New baby parents are excited about the dinner you will be bringing them TOMORROW NIGHT”, I flinch, panic, and think, “What am I going to take?”

Over time I have developed somewhat of a go-to meal for taking to other people.  I like it because it is simple, pretty general tasting (not spicy, no “weird” ingredients, etc.), and it transports well.  The meal consists of:

  • Crock Pot Parmesan Honey Chicken
  • Roasted Sweet Potato and Red Potato Mix
  • Sautéed Peas with Shallots and Lemon
  • Homemade Steakhouse Wheat Bread
  • Dessert

I first discovered this chicken recipe at a crock pot party. Is that a fabulous party idea, or what? My girlfriend invited a bunch of us over and we all brought a favorite crock pot dish and the recipe to share.  The recipe was originally for a pork roast, but I adapted it to chicken . . . that was back when we were still eating chicken.

I also take paper plates and plastic cutlery when I’m gifting a family with a meal.  If you are getting out of cooking, isn’t it an extra bonus to not have to do dishes as well?

Here was last night’s delivery.  It also included a half gallon of ice cream (Denali Extreme Moosetracks, our family favorite) which the receiving 4 year old of the family seemed pretty excited about.

For the Parmesan Honey Chicken Recipe, click here.