Monday, March 12, 2012

Soup and Science!

We had a great week with Hannah here, and today we settled back into semi-routine.  The boys have off from homeschool outside classes and co-ops this week, so I wanted to strike a compromise....part work and part play.  We have a little camping trip planned for later in the week, and on the days that we are here doing school, we are stepping outside the norm and making it more fun.

I read about Big Bag of Science on a homeschool blog and knew my boys would love it.  Nearly every reviewer on Amazon commented that it was really messy, which pretty much guaranteed it ranking high with boys.  I was in Hobby Lobby a few weeks ago, and on a lone shelf in a random isle, I found Big Bag of Science on clearance!!  I never would have thought to look at Hobby Lobby for something like that.  It was providential.

This was the perfect week to break out the little bag of tricks I'd been hiding.

So far, so good.  The boys enjoy the experiments so much that they don't mind at all doing lab write ups for me, and I can use the write ups to flex our grammar and penmanship muscles.  Win, win.

I have an amazing recipe to share with you today.  Soup is definitely one of my favorite meals.  Last week a cold snap hit (finally) and brought with it driving rain storms.  Perfect soup weather!  I tried a new potato soup recipe and liked it so much that I made it a second time less than a week later.  It's by far my new favorite!


3 1/2 c. diced potatoes
1/3 c. celery
1/3 c. onion (I leave out because we don't like)
3/4 c. diced ham (you can buy this in packs by the deli meats)
3 1/4 c. water
2T chicken bouillon (I use the powdered kind)
1/2 t salt (I omit this)
1 t pepper
5 T butter
5 T flour
2 c. milk

Combine potatoes, celery, onion, ham, and water in a stockpot.  Boil, then cook 15 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender.  Add bouillon, salt, and pepper.

In a separate pan, melt butter and whisk in flour.  Cook one minute.  Slowly add milk, whisking constantly for about five minutes or until thick.

Add milk to stockpot, mix well, and heat through.


The first time I made it I used russet potatoes, and I liked that best.  They were cheapest too.  I used red potatoes for the second batch, and they were good too, but the russets are super starchy and make for a thicker soup.

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