Wednesday, August 10, 2011

tomato basil soup

As my readers well know, I tend to work 50+ hours a week, and then dealing with the traffic. I have nights when I don't get home until 6:30-7:00 o'clock at night. So dinners on my "late nights" tend to be carry out...and I don't know about the rest of you, but it gets old fast!

So for the passed few months I've gotten back on the meal planning routine and on the weekends I make something a head of time for our Monday night dinner. This weekend I decided that Monday's dinner would be TOMATO BASIL SOUP with stuffed sausage bread (also baked the night before)can you say yum?!?!

Not only is this a healthier filling meal, but it only take 5 a total of 5 minutes to reheat when you arrive home after a long day in the office.

I hope you all enjoy it as much as we

Recipe Source: Ina Garten


3 pounds ripe plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons good olive oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
2 onions chopped
6 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 (28-ounce) canned plum tomatoes with juices
4 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1 quart chicken stock or water
1 cup of cream (I use fat-free and it works well)


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Toss together the tomatoes, 1/4 cup olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Spread the tomatoes in 1 layer on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes.

In an 8-quart stockpot over medium heat, saute the onions and garlic with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the butter, until the onions start to brown.

Add the canned tomatoes, basil, thyme, and chicken stock.

Add the oven-roasted tomatoes, including the liquid on the baking sheet.

Bring to a boil and simmer uncovered for 40 minutes.

Once above is complete blend using hand blender, return to stock pot and then add cream and let it come to quick simmer.

Taste for seasonings and serve hot.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Mocha Fudge Brownies with Dark Chocolate Drizzle

IF you ask me, this recipe has all the important food groups...mocha, coffee, fudge, and dark chocolate. What more could a girl ask for? Ok, maybe it doesn't cover all the major food groups, but it's now become my new all time favorite brownie recipe. I made two batches for a get together and they gone in a matter of a few hours. Everyone was raving on how great they were, they are a must try recipe. I promise you will not be disappointed.

Happy baking!


1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup sugar
2 squares unsweetened chocolate
2 eggs
1 cup flour
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons coffee
Chocolate syrup, for drizzling


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In large bowl cream together butter, sugar and eggs.

In another bowl combine flour and baking powder.

Melt chocolate in microwave.

Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Stir to combine.

Add chocolate, milk and coffee and mix well.

Pour into a buttered 8'baking pan and drizzle with chocolate syrup.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Zucchini Bread

Since we had so many zucchini this year, I had t o find new ways to use them, before they went to waste. Of course having a child that is the "I wouldn't eat that because it's green" stage, I had to find new ways to get certain veggies into his diet. Adding shredded zucchini into the bread makes it easy for me to achieve that goal.

The cool thing about this bread is that the spices in it, make it taste more like a coffee cake bread then an actual zucchini bread. The bread comes out with a nice smooth, moist texture. Something else that I love about this bread is the fact that it freezes well, so you can eat one now and then freeze the second bread for another day. I hope you, and your family all enjoy this as much as we have.

Recipe inspired by Paula's Home Cooking


3 1/4 cups of whole wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon of allspice
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup unsweetened apple sauce
4 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup water
2 cups grated zucchini
1 teaspoon lemon juice


Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a large bowl, combine flour, salt, nutmeg,all spice baking soda, cinnamon and sugar.

In a separate bowl, combine apple sauce, eggs, water, zucchini and lemon juice.

Mix wet ingredients into dry.

Bake in 2 standard loaf pans, sprayed with nonstick spray.

Bake for 1 hour, or until a tester comes out clean.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Healthy Zucchini Muffins

This month's JADE from decided that the What's Baking challenge would be Celebrate Summer. This month I decided that I would use up the abundance of Zucchini I have, and try to make something that was tasty and healthy.

Jonathan is in the phases where we wouldn't eat any green veggies. So, as his mother it's my job to find a way to get him to eat them. And I ask you, what better way than to bake them into his favorite things.

This recipe is so good that even myself who hated Zucchini love this recipe. With the applesauce and spices you really can tell that they have anything healthy in them. I hope you enjoy them as much and my 3 year old who eat 2 in one sitting!

Happy Baking!



2 cups of shredded zucchini
2 cups of whole grain pancake mix
1 Tsp of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of allspice
1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
3/4 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce
2 Tsp of lemon juice


Wash,peel, and shred zucchini

Wrap grated zucchini in a couple of paper towels and squeeze to remove water.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Line a 12 cup muffin tin

In a large bowl, and mix pancake mix,along with all the dry spices

In another bowl whisk together eggs, applesauce, and lemon juice

Fold egg mixture into shredded zucchini and dry ingredients.

Fill each muffin cup with 2/3 full with batter.

Bake for 15 minutes (until golden brown)

Cool on baking rack for 5-10 minutes.