Thanksgiving Is Over. Are You Having Any Cravings? - Joanna's, Anything Cooking? Blog at - 259273

Joanna's, Anything Cooking?

Thanksgiving is over. Are you having any cravings? 
Dec. 3, 2011 12:06 am 
Updated: Dec. 9, 2011 4:24 pm
     Thanksgiving is now officially over and we have just about four weeks until Christmas. Our Christmas dinner has taken a turn from our usual turkey, or ham for about the past six years.  It seems that Christmas dinner has become the holiday for us to splurge a little and the menu has changed to include Prime Rib which has also been very successful.  Seems for me after Thanksgiving passes, I get into one of those cooking modes which is primarily dependent on some pretty strong food cravings I tend to have.  For the last two days I have been craving French Onion Soup.  When the first craving hit two days ago I was totally out of onions.  Right now, we seem to be in the midst of a non "onion season."  About a month ago you could still find some very good Vidalia's at the market.  Those were followed by the 's and the Oso Sweets.  Right now, all I have seen are some pretty mundane Yellow onions which tend to be rather strong and not so very sweet.  Guess that is why I haven’t been too concerned about picking any up.  I did find some unusually good looking yellow onions this afternoon, so I picked up four.  Remember with onions that you want them to be flat vs. very round.  Flatter onions are sweeter and much tenderer.  When you really look at a Vidalia, or you will notice that the majority of them are flattened. Just a little tip on onions! 
     Talk about cravings.  For lunch today I had the strongest craving for herring, just plain old pickled herring on some Ritz crackers.  That sure hit the spot.  I prefer to believe that type of craving is my body telling me a need some fish oil, some extra Omega fatty acids for some reason.  Trust me, food cravings are never without merit and you will do well not to ignore some of those cravings.  Now, here it is at 9:30 p.m. and I am ready for bed.  All tucked in with a cute little Christmas movie to help me get tired.  Suddenly, there’s that craving for the French Onion soup.  Just too powerful to ignore, I sprang from that bed and down to the kitchen.  French Onion soup brings back many memories of dining out at a place called Bernie’s Deli here in .  It was located on  on the way out to .  It was the most wonderful Deli I have ever experienced.  I loved their liverworst, Swiss cheese and onion sandwich on rye with French Onion soup.  It was the best in the twin cities.  One day, Bernie the owner just decided to retire and that was it.  He tore the building down and sold the land. He said, “no one could ever run the place, or make the food the way his customers were used to.” What a sad day that was!  Anyway, before Bernie closed the doors, I was able to get a pretty good grasp of his French Onion Soup recipe so here goes.  I ended up making the soup which took just about and hour and a half.  I had a bowl and my craving totally disappeared so I could go to bed.

Four large, sweet yellow onions thinly sliced. I prefer a really sweet such as Vidalia, or ’s.
2 cloves of crushed, chopped garlic
4 Tablespoons of butter
2 Tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
6 cups beef broth, 2 cups of poultry broth (In desperation you can use bouillon)
1 sprig of Thyme, or 1 teaspoon of powdered.
2 Tablespoons sugar
6-8 pieces of thick slicked, toasted, dried buttered baguette (Can use dense white bread in a pinch)
6-8 large slices of provolone, or Swiss cheese.  (I prefer the round slices of Provolone)

In a large stockpot, or Dutch oven melt the butter and add the olive oil to heat.
Toss in the onions to brown.
Add the sugar and Thyme
Brown the onions until they just begin to caramelize.  The brown will help to color the broth.
As soon as the onions have browned slightly, add the broth-bouillon.
You will simmer the soup until the onions are very tender and very well done.

Taste the soup and add salt and pepper to taste.  Any slight bitterness can be diminished by just adding a tablespoon, or so of sugar.
Spoon the soup into a tall bowl. Put a piece of the dried bread on top.
Cover with a piece of cheese and place on a cookie sheet in the oven and broil the top until the cheese bubbles and just a slight browning occurs. (If you don’t want to fuss with the over, use the microwave for about 90 seconds until the cheese bubbles. Watch to be sure the soup doesn’t overflow the bowl.  The cheese will not “brown” in the microwave, but it is still very good.

Health Benefits of Onions

Dry onions are a surprising source of fiber and a rich source of healthy sulfur compounds, similar to those found in garlic. Research on onions has lagged behind garlic research, but onions appear to have similar cardiovascular benefits, such as reducing blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels, at least in the short term.

Onions also contain phytochemicals called flavonoids, which help vitamin C in its function, improving the integrity of blood vessels and decreasing inflammation. All this spells help for your cardiovascular system. One particular flavonoid, quercetin, may inhibit tumor growth and help keep colon cancer at bay.

In addition, a newly identified compound appears to rival the prescription drug Fosamax in inhibiting bone loss in menopausal women.
Onions also contain vitamin C and chromium. Chromium is a mineral that helps cells respond to insulin, ultimately assisting with blood glucose control. Green onions, because of their bright green tops, provide a wealth of vitamin A.

Usually when I have a thorough knowledge about something such as an onion I can also usually figure out what it is I am needing and why I am having the craving I am.

Thanks for reading!
Dec. 3, 2011 4:52 am
Yes, I get cravings, too. Lately they have been cravings I never ever even liked before! The latest one was for split pea soup. I hadn't tried split pea soup in over 35 years because I hated it. Then, suddenly I wanted it and wanted it bad. So, I made creamy split pea soup off this site and loved it! I didn't know onions had all those benefits, thanks for sharing. I didn't like onions until just a few years ago. French onion soup is the best, though I'll admit I haven't been able to make the "perfect" soup at home. We have a favorite restaurant that has very good French Onion Soup so we just go there when the craving hits.
Dec. 3, 2011 8:05 am
I've been craving tacos. Well, tacos, tostadas, chips and salsa, you get the drift. But then, I always crave Mexican food. Don't know why. Sounds like a good blog musing is in my future. The other day I had 6 nice Romas that were going soft, and some wilting cilantro, so made salsa. I guess I'm fortunate b/c here in Tampa we get nice really sweet onions all year, and the Commissary price is about 89 cents/lb. for ALL their onions. How sweet is that?
Dec. 3, 2011 8:18 am
I love Tampa. As a child lived awhile in St.Pete. Then my father died and we moved back to WI. Craving spicy can incicate a need to cleanse out our innerds. Also, tomatoes often indicate a need for more Vit C, or a more acidic environment for our body. Eating a lot of carbs frequently will create both needs as carbs raise sugars which in turn can change PH to more base vs. acidic which then increases the amount of yeast (molds)in our bodies. Symptoms can be bloating, tired, confusion, forgetfullness, headaches, body aches, flushing, hot flashes, loose stools. A tablespoon of cidar vinegar in water every day can help. Also can have sauerkraut juice. Pull back on carbs and focus on proteins and lower sugar green veges. Avoid cheeses as that adds o the yeast.
Dec. 3, 2011 8:22 am
I always say,"never ignore cravings for legumes" as this can indicate you bodies desire for clean protein and they also boost the immune system. They are high in B vitamins, fiber, what I call "clean proteins" and minerals.
Dec. 3, 2011 8:25 am
I'm new to this but that is great advice - abeit not yummy... I too am a carb addict and just can't seem to kick it; I'll hold my nose and try the vinegar thing this week.
Dec. 3, 2011 8:58 am
Thank you for all of that info about onions. We love them around here anyway and we are very lucky to live a few blocks from a mexican food mart that almost always has onions on sale for 33 to 49 cents a pound. We bring home 4 or 5 pounds and even though it's just the two of us in 10 to 14 days we need more onions. I've never had french onion soup. Guess I'm gonna have to try it!
Dec. 3, 2011 9:04 am
Yes, I have 2 cravings. The first one is turkey soup (I love it so much that I even have a special little song that I sing every year when it's on the stove!). The other craving is chocolate. Imagine that.
Dec. 3, 2011 11:13 am
Right now I'm craving flounder, that's what I am having for dinner.
Dec. 3, 2011 2:23 pm
"...a special little song..." ? Redly, you crack me up!
Dec. 3, 2011 2:37 pm
Yep The flounder was good, Just salt, pepper, and fried to a light golden brown on high about 5 to 6 mins (both sides).
Dec. 4, 2011 5:29 pm
My husband hates French Onion Soup so I wont make it bc most will go to waste. When we celebrated Thanksgiving with my Mom and Stepdad he made this soup that reminded of me of French Onion Soup a little. He gave me the recipe and it is so easy and also easy to make one serving of. He takes an onion (I used yellow) and cores it and cooks only the outside part then adds a big pat of butter (about 1 1/2 tbsp), a chicken or beef bullion cube, some cajun seasoning, garlic powder, if you want spicier some jalapeno and wraps the whole thing in foil and cooks on 350 for 1 hour. Im sure you could add cheese in the end. My husband actually ate it but only the broth with the bread. I was shocked! I made it the other night for myself with the chicken I was making him and it was so good. This is a great quick, simple lunch or app for dinner. In fact I think I may go throw one in the oven right now to go with dinner.
Dec. 9, 2011 4:19 pm
Thank you much for this tip. Sounds pretty much like French Onion to me. There I times I just crave it and this is a perfect answer for "the crave." Thank you again!
Dec. 9, 2011 4:20 pm
I really would love to hear the "Turkey Soup Song."
Dec. 9, 2011 4:24 pm
Mariane, I am a carb addict too and I need to address this issue before it kills me. My weight is way up as is my BP. I have headaches quite a bit of the time and so I am assuming I am full of yeast which also adds to the craving of carbs. I am going back to the Protein Power stuff and will be focusing my New Years recipes on proteins to kill this carb addiction. I quit smoking so easily I couldn't believe it, but now eating is an entirely different issue. Much harder as you just can't "stop eating." We'll work on it together and we will beat it!
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About Me
I am a non-working Registered Nurse. I have loved to cook ever since childhood. I love the outdoors and warm weather. Living in Minnesota and being from Wisconsin you would think I would enjoy cold weather and activities associated with, WRONG! I hate the cold and stay indoors almost the entire winter until Spring "breaks." What do you do in the winter? Cook, of course. I love experimenting with new, complicated food dishes and of course I love the taste of my own cooking. I love animals and have a Minature Schnauzer, "Pickles." She is a total joy!
My favorite things to cook
I love to make different Italian dishes. I tend to like spice so I am intrigued by India, Mexico, Thai and anything made with a "bite." Being of German descent, I have some favorite all time recipes that were my mom and dad's. Kliska is one of my families favorites. It is potato dumplings that are browned with bacon and pork pieces until the dumplings are crisped on the edges. Along with the pork pieces and bacon you have alot of chopped onion and a pinch of nutmeg; very tasty, but loaded with cholesterol.
My favorite family cooking traditions
As aforementioned I love to make Kliska. One of my best friends who is Swedish, makes a similar Klub which is a large potato dumpling filled with diced pork, onion, salt, pepper and a pinch of nutmeg. She wraps the dumplings which are coated with butter in aluminum foil and then dropped into boiling water for about 30 minutes. Being German, I do like the 'ol standbys of sauerkraut and pork ribs, sauerkraut and weiner's, sauerkraut and whatever. Sauerbraten, red cabbage and potatoes are a nice combination too.
My cooking triumphs
I just recently watched a cute "date" movie for about the 15th time with Lauren Hutton called Sweet Treats. She's a chef who combines with the male lead to form a team contesting in a cooking contest. In that movie they make a Torta Barozzi which is a very chocolate, non-flour torte. Was a rather complicated recipe, but I made it and it turned out "wonderful." It is a chocolate lovers dream.
My cooking tragedies
I never remember those cooking tragedies. I just never make them again and "move on" to greater things. I will say, I never serve a recipe that I have not made previously! Also when cooking meat, don't over cook and "always" use a meat thermometer!
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