Changing It Up

Never is a dining table bare in our house.  To see an empty surface is one of those things that makes me feel out of sync.  Yep, that’s an idiosyncrasy, but we all have them… least I hope that’s true!

fall tableWalking in  the Houston house after being absent for several months, the first thing I noticed was a table that had passed its season.  Before I unpacked my suitcase, I got to work on the table replacing the warmer weather runner  with a embroidered one that speaks more of nippy fall days which Houston is actually having.

fall tablePlacemats turned lengthwise to drape off the round table complete the linens.

fall tableA few pumpkins and paper turkeys from Michaels and this table is ready for dinner with friends in a couple of days.

fall tableTypically, these dishes don’t see the light of day until Thanksgiving day, but I’m cheating a little because the bowls are just the right size for the soup I’m thinking of making.

fall tableA salad plate, green Fostoria glasses, silverware, a napkin and all is done in a flash once again proving that every day tablescapes are nothing but easy.  Oh, those clementines?  Our friends are off sugar so they will be dessert, not a great replacement for a caramel/rum glazed spice cake or apple dapple cake

Not only are they off sugar, this couple is vegetarian.  Luckily, there are lots of good soups to satisfy that dietary need, and I’ll share one of my favorites from a Moosewood Restaurant cookbook.

potato kale soupCreamy Potato Kale Soup

1 c. finely chopped onions

2/3 c. finely chopped leeks

1/2 t. salt

1 T. canola or vegetable oil

4 c. vegetable stock

4 c. coarsely chopped potatoes

1/4 t. fennel, seeds or ground

1/2 c. finely chopped celery

2 T. while wine

1/2 t. dried dill

2 t. Dijon mustard

2 T. minced scallions

1 1/2 T. fined fresh basil

1/2 c. milk or half and half

4 c. loosely packed shredded kale

salt and pepper to taste, a squeeze of lemon if desired.

In a large soup pot, saute onions, leeks and salt in the oil on low heat until tender.  Add the stock and bring to a boil.  Add potatoes, fennel, celery, wine and dill. Simmer covered for about 20 minutes until the potatoes are tender.  Puree the soup until smooth. (This is where a handheld immersion blender comes in very handy.)  Stir in mustard, scallions, basil, milk.

In a separate pot, gently boil kale in just enough water to cover.  When it is barely tender, drain and stir into the soup.  Add salt and pepper, lemon juice if desired and gently heat until all is hot.  Makes 4-6 servings.

When I make this soup, I always hope for leftovers because it’s mighty good the next day for lunch.  Should you want to modify if for meat eaters, all you have to do is add slices of Polish sausage.

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25 thoughts on “Changing It Up

  1. Never a bare table at this house Lulu. lol! Love your dishes and the soup really looks yummy! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  2. I was just thinking to use the late kale I picked from the garden and was going to make a soup. This one fits the bill. Thanks!

    1. We all liked it and had seconds.💁

  3. I have long admired all of the Metlox patterns, and those bowls are wonderful, even if I am wrong in thinking that they are vintage Metlox. Love the table and the soup sounds divine!

  4. It’s easy to see where your priorities lie. 🙂 Love your table decor, and the soup bowls are lovely. Thanks for the recipe, although it rarely gets cold enough here for hot soup. 🙂

  5. Only Lulu would set the table before unpacking!!!!! You are AMAZING!!! The soup sounds scrumptious :)Have a HAPPY THANKSGIVING.

    With Blessings and Love, Carol

  6. Love it! The soup looks absolutely delicious and will give it a try.

  7. LOVE Moosewood!! xoxo

  8. I have been in a soup mood the last few days since it turned cold. Made two different soups already. Your recipe sounds great and I might give it a try soon.

    I thought of your Della Robia the other day with fondness because you always use it at Thanksgiving. My MIL has the same pattern. Sadly, she is now in Assisted Living and is no longer entertaining. I saw her dishes the other day in her cabinet and got a sad feeling.

    I think my husband will really like your soup recipe. Thanks.

    1. You need to get those dishes out and make them part of your tradition!! Do try the soup. It’s quite good.

  9. That a girl. Lol. I can’t believe you set the table before you unpacked your suitcase. I have said before, you are a first class gal. 🙂

    1. You do flatter me, Levi…..thanks.

  10. Gorgeous table, Lulu!! So fall~like! The deep rich colors and textures and oh, the soup, getting ready to Pin it after I type this. We LOVE soups!

    I wish I could keep our table set, I do that. Yes, I have place mats or runners to keep it pretty as well as a centerpiece, but to be able to put the dishes out in the morning would be so great. We just have a dining nook between the kitchen and living room. If I had a dining room I would set my tables every morning and play with holiday tables for weeks!!

    Hey, how is your daughter in Tennessee? I knew she was starting a new blog but I never got the name of it.

    Jane xx

    1. When it’s only the hubby and me we most of the time eat at the bar so it’s easy to get tables ready ahead of time.
      Linsey, etal, are doing very well. Her beautiful photos and works are at Bravehearted

  11. And you did it before I unpacked my suitcase. First things first! Very pretty 🙂
    The soup looks delicious, I may try the recipe this weekend. Thank you, Lulu!

    1. Do try the soup. It’s good enough for a second helping!

  12. Funny how you went straight to your table to “make it right”…beautiful table dressed perfectly for that wonderful soup!!…Now if I can only get my hubby to eat potatoes!…

    1. And here I thought potatoes were man food!

  13. Oh that soup looks real real good!

  14. YUM! I want that soup! Want to make it on Christmas Eve? Looking forward to your Thanksgiving table! xo

  15. that looks yum

  16. The soup looks yummy and healthy! I love to see your Della Robia, it was my choice for my “hope chest” almost 50 years ago and I am happy to see someone else still using it. Mine is packed away and only makes an appearance this time of year also but when I see it in your photos it makes me want to haul it all out and put it back in the daily rotation! Thanks!

    1. Should do as lime green and orange seem to be making a comeback.

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