I’m a recipe tweaker.
Anyone else out there?
I take a recipe that looks good, make sure there aren’t any crazy ingredients, then I add it to the meal plan for next week. Once it’s time to make it, and I don’t have the cayenne pepper (because it’s like $8+ for a bottle and I’m trying to be frugal here), I adapt. Or It calls for the juice from two oranges and I’d rather eat those oranges than gut them to add flare, so I toss in some orange peel instead.
My most frequented “tweak” of this kind, is subbing a cup of water and a chicken bouillon cube whenever it says “1 cup chicken broth.” I don’t personally feel the need to go buy chicken broth, which I don’t typically keep on hand, when I can make it with free water and a cube.
This is what I do on everything from Pinterest recipes to recipes given to me by friends and family. I am not a stick-to-every-detail type of girl when it comes to recipes.
When we first got married, sometimes Kyle was like, “I got the best wife ever! I’ll be eating like a king for the rest of my life!”
And other times we had to go to Plan B: Pizza
Okay, so maybe sometimes he was even more happy when this happened.
I think he even told me once I needed to not mess with the recipes so much.
All that to say, I was visiting my Uncle Jimbo and Aunt Lynn in Arkansas for my brother’s college graduation and she served her Black-Eyed Pea soup.
The soup was amazing.
It had a perfect mix of ingredients with everything from a surprising kick of vinegar to the incorporation of my beloved potatoes.
It goes without saying that I asked her for the recipe.
But because of my recipe tweaking habits, I changed a few of the fancier ingredients for some of my cheat ingredients.
I now present you with the culmination that has resulted in Kyle’s and my all-time favorite soup and go-to recipe! You can prepare it stovetop in a big pot. Or, I’ve recently moved to the crockpot – yet another cheat-tweak I’ve added to make my life easier!
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 T sautéing oil of your preference (I usually use coconut or olive)
- 1 minced garlic clove or some garlic powder (<<notice the included cheat-tweak I’m adding?)
- 6-8 potatoes, chopped to bite-sized pieces
- 2 cans black-eyed peas
- 1-2 cans of chunk chicken (or a shredded rotisserie chicken or shredded chicken leftovers)
- 1 cup water + 1 cube chicken bouillon 😉
- 2 T white vinegar (optional)
- 1 medium-sized can of salsa verde (the size can be adjusted based on your taste or how much broth you prefer)
- Pepper to taste
- Sauté chopped onions in your choice of oil at the bottom of a large soup pot until translucent (if you are doing crock pot, you can skip this step if you need to save time).
- Toss everything in the pot and bring to a boil (black-eyed peas can go in at this time, or you can wait until the potatoes are mostly cooked).
- Once boiling, lower to a simmer until potatoes are cooked and flavors are melded together well.
- Let cool slightly (or it will burn your entire tongue – I’ve done it several times), then serve.
Typical makes about 6 bowls – usually Kyle eats three, I eat two, then there’s one leftover for his lunch the next day. But we don’t serve it with sides usually, otherwise one bowl would probably be enough for each person.
This is also one of our Whole30 compliant meals. Just leave the black-eyed peas out and read the labels on all your other ingredients and you’re good to go! The soup is hearty enough it holds really well on its own even without its namesake.
So what are your go-to recipes? Are you as much of a recipe-tweaker as I am?