Sunday, August 29, 2010

Lazy Sunday afternoon

We headed to the park with some friends last weekend. It was such a pretty place to visit on a Sunday afternoon. We visited the ButterFly house and checked out some of the trails. It was such a warm day we that we had to go and visit Ritas on the way home. I am now ready for Fall! School has started and we are settling into a nice routine with school and soccer.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

What to do with an over abundance of tomatoes...

make homemade tomatoe sauce and wonderful salads!

Tomatoes, caramelized onions, garlic, basil, celery and olive oil

Heirloom Tomatoes with Creamy Gorgonzola Dressing

Please, I beg you, even if you don't like tomatoes, please try this. It just might be the best salad in the whole wide world.
Heirloom Tomatoes with Creamy Gorgonzola Dressing
adapted from the recipe by Ina Garten
The best place to find heirloom tomatoes is probably your local farmer's market, and I thought they were delicious. Whatever you do, just make sure that the tomatoes you choose are fully ripe when you eat them; if they are white or mealy in the center, they are not worth eating.
3 pounds heirloom tomatoes, mixed colors and sizes
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 pound Gorgonzola cheese, divided in half
1 cup good mayonnaise
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
slice and core tomatoes, cutting the large ones into thick slices, and halving cherry tomatoes. Arrange on platter, and sprinkle liberally with salt, pepper, and parsley.
In the bowl of a food processor, combine half the Gorgonzola, 1 cup mayonnaise, 1/2 cup cream, and 2 tablespoons vinegar, as well as 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Process until combined, but still chunky.
drizzle the dressing over the tomatoes. Crumble the rest of the blue cheese, and serve at room temp. Enjoy! I ate this for every meal until all my tomatoes were gone!

Monday, August 2, 2010

BLT Pasta for 2 or Summer Pasta

I haven't been doing allot of cooking over the last few months. I have been making easy meals for us. I found this recipe in Cuisine at Home and had to try it. It is a wonderful pasta dish made with whole wheat noodles, grilled chicken, caramelized onions, garlic, tomatoes and garlic bread crumbs. I left out the bacon and added basil and arugula at the end. Anna and I loved this dish. It says it is enough for two but we still have leftovers for lunch today. YUM!
BLT Pasta

2 strips thick-sliced bacon, diced ( I used 2 grilled chicken breast instead)
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 tsp sugar 
1/2 cup onions, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic chopped 
1/4 cup dry white wine 
1/2 cup chicken broth 
1 tsp red wine vinegar 
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes 
4 oz dry bucatini or whole wheat spaghetti 
1 cup fresh spinach leaves ( I used Arugula instead)
10 basil leaves thinly sliced
For garlic bread crumbs:
1 cup French bread, cubed (about one 1/2 inch thick slice)
1 T olive oil
salt to taste
How to make it
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta.
Mince the garlic for the bread crumbs in a food processor, add the cubed bread, and process until coarse.
Heat oil in a nonstick skillet over medium: add crumbs and toast until golden, 3-4 minutes, stirring often. Season with salt and set aside.
Saute the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat.
Cook until crisp, then drain on paper-towel. Pour off all but 1 T. drippings.
Caramelize the tomatoes and sugar in the drippings over medium heat.
Cook until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes.
Add the onions, saute until wilted, 3-4 minutes.
Deglaze with wine; simmer until liquid is nearly evaporated.
Add the broth, vinegar, and pepper flakes and simmer until reduced by 1/3, about 5 minutes.
Cook the pasta in boiling water according to package directions.
Add the spinach or whatever green you are using, basil, and bacon pieces to the sauce.
Transfer the cooked pasta from the pot to the pan using tongs.
Toss to coat.
Season with salt, then transfer to large serving platter or individual plates.
Sprinkle with garlic bread crumbs before serving.

Trying New Things

This past year has been a year of change. We moved from a huge running community to an area that does not have the biking and running trails...