Archive

Posts Tagged ‘tomatoes’

Tomato Soup

January 2, 2014 Leave a comment
Tomato soup

Tomato soup

Is there any job in America that gets it wrong more often than Weather Forecasters? I know its not an exact science, but it IS a science and you would think that in 2014 there would be a better way to get it right.

In my opinion, the only way to know what the weather is up to, is to step outside and see for yourself.

That said, I still find myself checking the various weather forecasts, especially when I have upcoming plans outdoors (or vacation).

I check way more often in the winter than the summer. I find this odd because I have less outdoor plans in the winter so in theory I should care less.  However, I do it mainly to see IF we’re going to get inclement weather that may factor in to my daily commute.

So recently I checked out one of the online weather sites and was upset to discover that in the next few days they’re predicting frigid temperatures.

A high of 1 degree to be exact.  One. Uno.  Factor in the wind chills and who knows how cold it will get.  I won’t like that at all.  I suppose many won’t.

Then I remembered there are people in Minnesota, North Dakota, Wisconsin, and plenty of other states that have it much worse than me for many more days each and every year.

Then there’s the Russians?  The Canadians?

After dreading whats forthcoming for a few moments, I realized that no matter how bad I think I have it, there is always someone worse off.

Still doesn’t mean I won’t lay around in comfy sweats and a hoodie enjoying a nice cup of tea….or coffee….or a delicious bowl of soup.

************************************************************************************************

This recipe is simple and has just a few ingredients (most of which may already be in your pantry).

From start to finish it takes around 15 minutes give or take.

This soup is much healthier that those cans of condensed soup. Not to mention, this version probably costs about the same, yet feeds a family of 4 (with leftovers for lunch the next day).

Who doesn’t like healthy, economical, simple and delicious.

Enjoy!

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 (28 oz) can of diced tomatoes (I used Organic which was $1.50 at Aldi)
  • 1 (43 oz) container of low sodium tomato juice
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar (to cut the acidity of the tomatoes)
  • 2 low sodium chicken bouillon cubes
  • Fresh Ground Pepper (eyeball it)
  • 1/2 cup Half & Half
  • 1 tablespoon of basil, chopped

Directions:

  1. Melt butter in a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium high heat.
  2. Add onion and cook until soft.
  3. Add tomatoes and stir to combine.
  4. Add tomato juice, stir.
  5. Add sugar, stir.
  6. Add bouillon cubes, stir.
  7. Add pepper, stir.
  8. Bring everything to a boil then remove from heat.
  9. Stir in the half & half and basil.
  10. Serve immediately. (preferably with a grilled cheese sandwich)

Tuscan Beef Stew

December 15, 2013 1 comment
Tuscan Beef Stew

Tuscan Beef Stew

When I first started blogging I would write two, sometimes three entries a week.  If you follow, you know that its no where near that pace these days.  It’s got to the point where people ask why I don’t blog more often.  It’s a legit question and one I really don’t have an answer for.

So let me dive in to it a bit more and see what I can come up with.

1.  Its no longer my ‘flavor of the month’? My wife says that anytime I do something new, I obsess over it.  Sadly, she’s right (as most significant others are).  She can easily site numerous examples and I can’t disagree with any of them.

2. I haven’t been cooking anything good?  This isn’t entirely accurate. But for the most part I’m in a bit of a rut.  I’ve been cooking things I’m comfortable with instead of branching out.  Even though I’ve found a ton of recipes I want to try, I just haven’t made them as often as I would like.

3.  Work has been a bit demanding as of late?  Business has picked up lately that’s for sure and when I’m at work doing what it is I do there, one of the last things I want to do is write. I think I’d rather catch up on TV.

4.  My food photos look like garbage?  Garbage? I think they look like crap.  We eat with our eyes so the last thing a blog about food needs is unappealing photos of said food.

5.  There’s nothing to write about?  I can’t argue with this at all.  I mean, I just wrote a list detailing why I’m not writing.  If that doesn’t reek of uninteresting, I don’t know what does.

So there you go…..5 reasons why I’m not blogging nearly as much as you (mainly me) would like.

************************************************************************************************

This stew recipe is from the Cooking TV channel show Extra Virgin starring Ari Gold’s secretary (Entourage reference in case you’ve never seen the show) and her Italian (Tuscany region) husband.  If you’ve never watched, its on often so check it out while you’re making the stew….because while the recipe is simple and uses simple ingredients, you will have a couple hours to kill while its cooking.  The show has been my new favorite cooking show.

This flavorful stew is rich and hearty and has quickly become my new go-to stew recipe.  The slow braise makes the beef fork tender but the the veggies don’t turn to mush.  Make sure you serve it with a nice hunk of crusty bread so you can savor all of the juices.  Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 red or yellow onion, rough chopped
  • 3 large peeled carrots cut in to 1/2 inch thick medallions
  • 3 stalks of celery, rough chopped
  • 2-3 lbs of stew meat – 1 inch cubes (to save money, buy a chuck roast and cut it yourself)
  • 2 1/2 cups dry red wine (such as Cabernet Sauvignon)
  • 1 28oz can of whole tomatoes
  • 4-6 sprigs of fresh thyme (wrapped in a bundle if possible)
  •  Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan or dutch oven over medium high heat.
  2. Add onion, carrot and celery.  Saute about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until just browned.
  3. Add beef and cook until browned on all sides.
  4. Add wine and thyme. Stir to combine.
  5. Bring to a boil.
  6. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper.
  7. Lower heat to medium-low and cover.
  8. Cook for approximately 2 to hours or until beef is tender.
Big old Pot of Stew

Big old Pot of Stew

Pasta in Garlic Sauce

August 4, 2012 4 comments
Pasta in Garlic Sauce

Pasta in Garlic Sauce

If you run a food blog, love to cook, or you breath, then chances are you’ve heard of Pinterest.

If you’re unfamiliar, Pinterest is a site where registered users from all over the world “pin” just about anything they think of. Movies, books, fashion, photography, funny quotes, and of course, recipes.  Its an online bulletin board of sorts meant to peak your interest and inspire.

When I first heard of Pinterest I wasn’t sure what to make of it.  But then I started looking over my wife’s shoulder as she browsed the site.  Seeing all of the magnificent looking desserts she viewed, I decided to give it a whirl on my own.

I’m glad I did.

I mainly review the food and drink “pins” and I’ve been incredibly inspired by so many talented food bloggers that I discovered.  The blogs I found through Pinterest have given me tons of recipes of to try.  Pinterest may have even been the final piece of motivation I needed to start my own blog.

Most recipe “pins” are unique, but sometimes there will be one or two “pins” that keep showing up over and over again.  These recurring “pins” are known as a ‘repin’ and serves as a measure of popularity.

Such is the case with the recipe I’m about to share. I’ve seen this recipe pinned so many times that it was virtually impossible for me not to want to give it a try.

Pinned as “Spaghetti in Garlic Gravy with Herbs and Lemon Marinated Chicken and Cherry Tomatoes”, this recipe is a refreshing summer pasta dish that makes excellent use of fresh cherry tomatoes that are cropping up in backyard gardens all over the country.

I thought the name was too long, plus I omitted the chicken, so I simply call it Pasta in Garlic Sauce.  Enjoy!

Adapted from Godess of Scrumptiousness Blog

Ingredients:

Ingredients

  • 1 pound (box) pasta
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes

Cook pasta according to package.

Meanwhile, over medium heat, melt butter and olive oil.

Add garlic and saute approximately 1-2 minutes or until garlic is soft.

Add flour and stir.  Cook for approximately 1 minute.

Another Roux

The start of another roux: a recurring theme on my blog

Add chicken stock and simmer until thick.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Add basil and drained pasta. Stir to combine.

Add tomatoes and cheese and gently toss.

Plate the dish and top with a small sprinkle of basil and a bit more cheese.

Summer Pasta

This is summer