Sunday, February 13, 2011

Inspiration in a bowl of dumpling soup

"Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier."
~Mother Teresa

The master chef tasting his creation.

Dinner is served.

Do you inspire people? On a day to day basis I don't think I inspire many people, but recently I feel like I have. What a great feeling knowing that you encouraged or motivated someone to do something good. My two encounters with inspiration came from the two little people in my family. Leave it to the little people to do or say things that make you happy : ), darn them and their innocent comments.

My first encounter with inspiration came from my niece. My poor niece...I used to bake with her a lot more, but I started getting so many paying customers that I had to exclude her from most of my baking adventures. I try to make time at least once a week to make something with her, but that isn't enough for her. She is probably one of the only seven year old kids that knows how to work a kitchen aid mixer, a food processor, saute onions, and make eggs. She is very quickly working her way up to Sous Chef status is this house... sorry Mimi : ) Anyway, I was filling an order the other day while she sat at the table drawing away like she always does. She looked up and said, "I want to be like you when I grow up." I said, "Oh yeah, why?" She said, "I want to make things and sell them to people, and get money from them." What a cutie. She then disappeared upstairs for a few hours to work on a secret project. When she finally came down stairs she showed us 3-4 paper crowns she had colored, cut out, and taped together. She proudly told us that she was going to take them to school and sell them to the kids. She gets that salesmen attitude from her Daddy who happens to be an incredible salesman! Bless her heart! Inspired creativity, check.

My second encounter with inspiration came from the baby of the family, my 14 year old brother Nick. Being the runt of the litter he has 6 older siblings with strong personalities that he has to compete with. I have often asked him to help cook or bake, but he has never really shown an interest. I was determined to teach him how to cook, it is such an important life skill that he really does need to know. I bought him a cookbook for kids for Christmas, which he responded to by saying, "I am not a kid." So he grabbed a sharpie, blacked out the word "kids", and inserted the word "teenagers." Somehow that made it an okay cookbook and he would maybe consider, the power of a sharpie, I had no idea it could do that. : ) I told him to go through the book and pick out a few recipes we could try out and I would get all the ingredients we needed to make it happen. He liked that idea. Our schedules were conflicting so we couldn't nail down any times that worked for both of us. So he got home from school as I was leaving and started making the recipe on his own. He didn't think he could do it, but he did, and it was awesome. So awesome that I am posting the recipe for everyone else to try as well. Inspired someone to cook, check.

So, have you inspired anyone in your life? Even though I only inspired them to be creative, and to cook it felt like a whole lot more. So get out there and share what you are good at with someone! I know what you are all thinking, "what happy pill is she on?", or "maybe she stole that sharpie from Nick", but no...that is the power of inspiration my friends...go get you some. : )

"If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader."
- John Quincy Adams

Turkey Dumpling Soup

adapted from Kitchen for Kids by Jennifer Low

2-3 Green Onions, sliced into disks
6 oz uncooked ground turkey,chicken, or pork

1/2 tsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp vegetable oil
1 tsp garlic
Salt and Pepper
1 large egg white

32 wonton wrappers (one package)
6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 eggs, whisked lightly

Mix together in a medium bowl the green onions, meat, soy sauce, oil, garlic, salt and pepper until combined. In separate small bowl whisk the egg white and set aside. Lay a single row of wonton wrappers flat on a tray and place a rounded tsp of meat filling in the middle of each wrapper. Using a pastry brush or your finger brush the edges of the wonton wrapper with egg white. Place an additional wrapper on top of those and press together around the edges until sealed shut. Continue this process until all the dumplings are assembled.

Bring broth to a simmer. Place the dumplings in the broth 5 or 6 at a time and simmer about 10 minutes. Remove from broth and set aside. Continue cooking until all the dumplings are cooked. Remove all the dumplings from the broth and while whisking slowly pour the 2 whisked eggs into the broth. Serve in bowls and place 3-4 wontons in bowl and spoon broth over them. Top with sliced green onions.

"Find out how much God has given you and from it take what you need; the remainder is needed by others."
~Saint Augustine

1 comment:

  1. Dagny,
    You never cease to write such interesting, creative, and seamless posts. You inspire me! :) Keep up all the great work, I love reading your b-log! (its bookmarked on my toolbar!) :)
    Hope you are well!