For those of you buried in snow right now, you might be asking yourself..

Hmmm….Unfortunately, I can’t help you with that one.  If it makes you feel better, I would gladly trade places with you.  Call me crazy, but I could go for a pile of snow right now.

Since I can’t come and shovel your driveway for you, I thought I would send some warm thoughts (in the form of pictures) from spring-like Houston as well as an easy soup to warm your belly.

Don’t be too upset by the lovely weather I am enjoying.  By the time you are enjoying blue skies and cherry blossoms, we will already be suffering heat stroke and hiding from skeeters.

I know raspberries are not in season, but we somehow get the most beautiful raspberries here, even in the winter.  I try not to buy them until they actually are in season…I just couldn’t resist the other day.

Do you remember what blue skies look like?  What about clouds that don’t dump a load of snow?  Here is a reminder.

Now get in the kitchen and make some homey soup!  All you need is a handful of ingredients and you have a meal that is good enough to make you forget about the cold weather for a few minutes.

Caramelized Onion and Root Vegetable Soup

Serves 6

Adapted from the January 2011 Martha Stewart Living

Note: Caramelizing onions takes a little time and patience, but they can be made ahead and refrigerated (or even frozen).  Once the onions are prepared, this soup is a snap to throw together.  Don’t skip the cheesy bread.  Gruyere is so fabulous with beef stock and onions.  Yum!

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

2 pounds onions (4 medium), halved and sliced thin

1 teaspoon light brown sugar

2 teaspoons fresh thyme

1 tablespoon water

salt and pepper

6 cups high quality beef stock

5 medium carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

2 turnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks

1 dry bay leaf

6 large slices of day-old country bread

12 slices Gruyere cheese

Melt the butter with oil in a large skillet over high heat.  Stir in the onions, brown sugar, thyme, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 4-5 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are deep brown, about 45 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in water.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Preheat broiler with rack about 6 inches from heat source.  Bring beef stock and bay leaf to a boil.  Add carrots and turnips.  Reduce heat, and simmer, covered, until vegetables are almost tender, about 5 minutes.  Remove bay leaf.

Meanwhile, top each slice of bread with 2 slices of cheese.  Broil until cheese is golden and bubbling, about 5 minutes.

Divide vegetables evenly among 6 bowls using a slotted spoon.  Divide onions among bowls.  Divide hot stock among bowls and top each with cheesy bread.