FOFF Soft Pretzels or Potatoes and Peas Soup (Stew)

by Joanne on October 27, 2011

Last week I promised we would make pretzels.  I didn’t let you down because a new FOFF member (and I sincerely hope she keeps cooking with us) was excited about making the pretzels.  She ran with the recipe and made it all her own.  Check out Spice’s take on “Aunt Carla’s Soft Pretzels” on page 8 of our book

Carla Vavala

She did a great job with this recipe!

My daughter loved it but because of no cheese dip she thinks they are next best to Auntie Anne’s. I did tweaked the recipe a little bit but because of some mistake I re figured it kinda. Here are the changes I made :

  • water + milk,
  • Rapid Rise instead of active dry yeast (so no proofing done)
  • honey instead of white sugar
  • EVOO instead of melted butter
  • combination of bread flour & whole wheat flour
  • sea salt for topping

Thanks for the recipe. Your words “Want to make pretzels with us” were the motivation words. It was fairly easy process, & I loved the texture of the pretzels though it wasn’t as chewy(outer crust) as store bought are but we loved it.

Aunt Carlas Pretzels by Spice

As for the Soup, it’s another winner!

This week’s recipe was Peggy’s pick and can be found on page 32 of “Fusion of Food and Friends” by Carla Vavala.

Peggys potato and pea

The recipe is by Lucy “Nana” Ferragine.  You’ll have to visit Peggy’s site for a real soupy potatoes and peas because I made my version more of a stew.

I added pearled barley which soaked up a lot of the liquid to result in a thick tomato based stew rather than soup.


Here’s what I did:

  • 2 TBS oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 TBS fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, slice thin
  • 1 can peas with liquid (I drained mine)
  • 15oz can tomato sauce
  • 24 oz Yellow Yukon Gold Mini Potatoes, cut in half
  • 15 oz water
  • 1 vegetable or beef bouillon cube
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup Pearl Barley

In the bottom of a 3 qt saucepan add the oil. Stir in onions, garlic,parsley, celery. Cook on low until onions become transparent.

Add peas, sauce, potatoes, water, bouillon, barley and pepper. Don’t add the salt yet because the bouillon has plenty. Cook it a while, taste and add salt if needed.

Cook for 3 hrs on low. Taste for flavor and add salt if needed.


Naturally, I sprinkled a little Parm-Romano in my bowl!

This recipe was very basic and completely fuss-free.  The result was a good, hearty meal in one bowl.  Vegetables, potatoes, and healthy barley. Another thumbs up to Carla, or should I say Lucy “Nana”, or maybe Peggy for choosing the perfect recipe.

NEXT WEEK:  Are you up for it? We’re making our own Spicy Homemade Salsa.  You will need jalapenos, garlic, a banana pepper, cilantro leaves, lime, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and a large can of diced tomatoes.   I know the recipe will be good but how about this:  How original can we be in using/eating/pairing the salsa?  Maybe you don’t like salsa with anything but tortilla chips. Let me know. Maybe you use it on your eggs? Let me know.  Do you rub it on your legs?  Hey! It might make them tingle?!

What do you use salsa with/for/when/where/how?  Next week, guys. Come on!

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  • At 2011.10.27 09:07, Beth said:

    This looks delicious – especially on a day like today! I think you and I have a friend in common – Bonnie F – (rhymes with Penner)! Small world!!

    • At 2011.10.27 09:47, Peggy said:

      Hey girl,
      Your soup/stew looks fantastic. Actually, mine was quite thick as well since I added the tiny penne pasta to it. It was a hearty meal. And those pretzels look fabulous. I doubt I could make those as well as Spice did, however. Salsa sounds good for next week!

      • At 2011.10.27 15:29, A Brown Table said:

        This looks deliciously comforting and hearty. Awesome job!

        • At 2011.10.27 18:06, Gera said:

          You know Joanne, you cannot show me all these delicious stuff before a training 🙂 Am I invited to enjoy that spicy salsa? Perhaps with spicy nachos mmm!



          • At 2011.10.27 21:45, Russell at Chasing Delicious said:

            Yumm! That soup looks scrumptious! So do those pretzels. I’ve been wanting to tory making them for a while.

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