I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for KitchenIQ. I received promotional items to thank me for my participation.
Between work, kids’ activities, and volunteering, it takes a fair amount of coordination and effort to make time to spend with my friends. Because those social breaks help me unwind and reconnect with the people I like and admire, I do make the effort. Every once in awhile I get lucky and I’m able to combine work and play and share some of my blogging perks with my friends.
Recently I was asked to review some products from KitchenIQ with some of my friends. This seemed like the perfect excuse to get together with some of my favorite people for lunch.
I wanted everyone to try all three of the kitchen tools so I chose this Ginger Carrot Soup recipe from the KitchenIQ recipe booklet. An added bonus was that this recipe is gluten-free, which was essential since one of my friends can’t eat gluten.
Before the party, I laid out all of the tools and ingredients on my kitchen counter.
We did the food prep together. The Better Zester was amazing for mincing the ginger and garlic. The built in storage container made it easy to measure exactly 1 tablespoon of each as called for in the recipe. The non-stick coating made it super easy to clean afterwards.
Here’s the “action” shot of one of my friends mincing the garlic.
After we finished mincing the garlic and ginger, we peeled and chopped the carrots and potato with the Potato Tool.
The potato tool is more than just a peeler. It has an attached scrubbing brush which is great if you are making baked potatoes and want to clean the skin first. Thankfully, the tool has a non-slip handle so we didn’t accidentally skin ourselves while peeling potatoes. My favorite feature was the built in paring knife that is stored in the handle.
Here is the entire recipe so you can recreate it at home.
- 2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup chopped sweet onion
- kosher salt
- 1 Tbs minced garlic
- 1 Tbs minced peeled ginger
- 2 lbs carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium russet potato, peeled and chopped
- 6 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
- ¼ cup slivered almonds or pine nuts
- 1⅓ cups plain low-fat Greek yogurt
- 1 tsp honey
- 1 tsp minced fresh thyme
- freshly ground pepper
- Combine the olive oil and onion in a Dutch oven or heavy pot over medium-high heat. Sprinkle with salt and cook, stirring, until just starting to caramelize (about 10 minutes).
- Add the garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, 2 more minutes, being careful not to burn the mixture.
- Stir in the carrots, potato, and stock.
- Bring to a simmer, cover and cook until the carrots and potato are very tender, 15-18 minutes. Keep warm
- Meanwhile, in a small saute pan over high heat, lightly toast the pine nuts or slivered almonds. Set aside to cool.
- In a small bowl, combine yogurt, honey, thyme and ½ tsp pepper.
- Puree the soup with an immersion blender until very smooth (or puree in a regular blender in batches). Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper and serve with a dollop of the yogurt mixture and some pine nuts or slivered almonds.
I thought the ginger in the soup would pair well with an Asian salad. Since I’m a HUGE fan of Panera’s Asian Chicken Salad, I went in search of a copycat recipe. I found one at Iowa Girl Eats, and she credits Art+Food+Life for the dressing recipe.
I marinated the chicken before my friends arrived, but we finished the salad together. Before I sliced the chicken, I had to sharpen my extremely dull cook knife. I love this space-efficient Edge Grip Knife Sharpener. It has both a coarse and fine sharpening slot. It only took a few pulls to make my dull knife razor sharp.
I couldn’t find baked wonton strips and didn’t have any wonton on hand to make my own so we had to go without. The salad was still delicious but prevented our version from looking like a true copycat.
- 1 bag chopped romaine lettuce
- 1 bag baby spinach
- 4 medium chicken breasts
- ½ cup rice vinegar
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 Tbs canola oil
- 1½ tsp toasted sesame oil
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp toasted sesame seeds
- Chopped cilantro
- 11 oz can mandarin oranges packed in water
- ¼ cup sliced almonds
- Baked or fried wonton strips
- Sesame seeds
- Whisk together chicken marinade ingredients and marinate chicken for 15 minutes.
- Grill, or cook in a non-stick sprayed skillet until done, then let chicken rest for 5 minutes.
- Cut into slices.
- Bring vinegar to a boil in a small saucepan.
- Turn off the heat, then add
in the sugar and stir until dissolved. Let cool.
- Combine with the rest of the dressing ingredients in a jar and shake to combine.
- Divide lettuce and spinach between four plates.
- Top with sliced chicken, salad dressing, and toppings.
We sliced up a loaf of French bread and lunch was ready. If you follow me on Facebook, you might have seen a picture of our completed lunch posted there on the day of the party. The Ginger Carrot Soup & Asian Chicken Salad was a perfect lunch for our small, casual get-together.
As I mentioned earlier, one of the perks was that I got to spoil my friends with some of their own goodies. They each got their own Better Zester (thanks KitchenIQ).
If you want to #SharpenYourKitchenIQ by picking up your own Better Zester, Potato Tool or Edge Grip Knife Sharpener, you can find them (along with many other helpful kitchen tools) on the KitchenIQ website and at Amazon.com.