Tag Archives: tomato

Stacked with flavor…

A long day, yielded the will to make a delicious eggplant parm supper! After making a trip to a fresh vegetable market and picking up some plump purple lovelies, it was time to head home and start the prep work for what would be a delightful supper…
Everything started by making a big pot of sauce; it was then off to slicing the eggplants and then dusting each in flour, dipping in egg and a quick coating in breadcrumbs and it was then time to start frying.
After all was crisp, it was time to build up and create the perfect marriage… a layer of sauce, then eggplant, some grated pecorino and mozz, basil and then repeated…
A quick bake in the oven and it was time to sit down, sip a glass of wine, slice into and then enjoy!

at a low simmer…
-R

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sicilian street food!!

To finish off a stellar weekend, we decided to whip up some ‘panelle’. [Panelle happens to be an extremely popular street food served in Sicily.] We haven’t made them in quite some time, but that craving hit pretty hard. These crisp and flavorful beauties do require some serious elbow grease, but the end result is entirely worth it! Using an age-old and very secret family recipe, these fluffy pillows of goodness are made using chickpea flour. Once fried until perfectly golden, they are sandwiched on a roll with some sliced tomato and red onion! The hardest part when making these puffy fritters… not eating the entire tray…

at a low simmer…
-R

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the big day, full of big flavors!!

The last few days have been filled with preparation for the Thanksgiving holiday… numerous runs to the market, prep work of some appetizers, as well as the big important part… the turkey!
The appetizers were endless… fresh mozz and tomato, stuffed mushrooms, marinated artichokes, along with a variety of others…
The main course was equally as vast! A nineteen pound turkey that was seasoned with my special ingredients [as well as ALOT of butter], fluffy stuffing, sautéed carrots, mashed potatoes, various sweet potato dishes, brussel sprouts, cauliflower sautéed in garlic and oil, as well as quite a few more…
After a quick cleanup and resting period, it was time for dessert… where oh where was one to put these?? Homemade pumpkin pie, coconut custard, a pecan cheesecake, cakey pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, cream puffs and an apple pie…
Stuffed is not a word to describe exactly how I’m feeling now, but once a year it’s acceptable and allowed!

at a low simmer…
-R

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you say tomato… I say soup!

So yesterday was the weekly CSA basket pick-up… once I got mine and saw the abundance of tomatoes in it the decision was simple… roasted garlic tomato soup!
First I chopped the tomatoes up and smashed a few garlic cloves… everything then was tossed with olive oil, fresh pepper and some salt. Into the oven for a little over an hour on a low temp helped extract the sweetness of the tomatoes and provide a toasty element, while turning the garlic into something, well magical!
Once roasted, it was into the food processor and pulsed, pulsed, pulsed… then into a cast iron pot, along with some homemade stock to help thin out this story, a thyme bundle and then set to simmer for a bit.
After its bath, it was into a bowl, garnished with some rich finishing oil and a sultry dollop of creme fraiche… ahhh heavenly!!
Even though the temps were warm and the humidity up, there was no better way to enjoy those gorgeous, tasty and colorful gems! Now to wonder what next weeks basket will offer…

at a low simmer…

-R

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plump and juicy…

Tonight I used the gorgeous, plump tomatoes that I received in my weekly CSA basket!
Just a simple tomato salad made up of sliced red onion, some salt and olive oil… that was it!
The chunky tomatoes played beautifully against the red onion and provided a lovely sweetness to the light spice from the red onion…
How I hope next weeks basket has much of the same!!

at a low simmer…
-R

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it’s hip to be square, well in this case rectangle!!

Tonight I decided to make a sicilian-style pizza, rather than my usual everyday round pie… I picked up some creamy, slightly salty fresh mozz from the Italian market I frequent, clipped some vibrant green basil from my garden, grated some pecorino and defrosted some homemade sauce.
Into the oven for twenty-five minutes and a warm bubbly piece of perfection was born… waiting for this to cool off enough to handle was not on the agenda… a hefty square slice was dug out and onto the place it went for its magazine cover shoot!
The crust was soft and airy, with hints of rosemary and garlic infused gently throughout… the sauce blanketed the crust evenly and just enough to hold the fresh mozz and basil leaves in place. The fresh mozz stretched seductively with each breathy bite… there was not a crumb to be found on our plates, and who needed a napkin… our fingers were sucked clean!
This meal was not for the faint of heart!

at a low simmer…

-R

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‘Muscles’ are good and all, but I prefer mine in a garlicky broth…

So after much thought this morning, I decided instead of going out for dinner I’d rather make something scrumptious at home!
What better to make than something not on my usual menu… so mussels in a spicy red sauce with garlic and wine. One word… SUPERB
It all started with a load of chopped garlic sauteed in olive oil until fragrant, then the mussels, a can of whole tomatoes [with their juices] that I crushed, salt and crushed red pepper were added and cooked for about twenty minutes uncovered. Lastly, I added some wine [drunk mussels are always fun mussels], chopped parsley and then cooked covered for another five until every last mollusk stumbled out to say hello.
The flavors were spicy, sultry and like the sea. Each bite made you yearn for more and more… I served this delicious meal with crusty bread that was brushed lightly with a homemade garlic infused olive oil that I grilled slightly. It was the perfect assistant to sop up every last bit of saucy goodness! Next time I’ll be sure to pick up two loaves…

at a low simmer…
-R

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small bites… BIG flavors!

Usually, as you have seen in the past, when I make a pizza it’s on the large side. Tonight I decided to change it up a bit and create three ‘tapas’ style pizzas! One had to be a traditional margherita pie, the other would be oil, garlic, sliced tomato and shredded fontina, and the last… well that would be the amped up [and star] pie dressed with homemade balsamic onions, sautéed bulk sausage and shredded aged manchego!
Each pie offered up distinct flavors, but the balsamic onion pie was like none I have ever experienced… slightly acidic, with syrupy and sweet notes, a touch of gaminess from the manchego and herby from the sausage! Perhaps I should have made regular size pies afterall…

at a low simmer…
-R

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On a bed… of greens…

A nice crisp salad with grilled chicken breast was on my mind all day, but I never had the opportunity to put one together or even grab-and-go… So I marinated some chicken breast and tossed it onto the grill, while putting together a quick salad full of garbanzo beans, shards of sharp provolone [picked up a decent size chunk at the Italian specialty store] and sweet cherry tomatoes…
All the layers of flavor… salty, pungent and a sharp bite from the provolone, sweet from the tomatoes, creamy from the snap of biting into the garbanzos and earthy from the mixture of spicy, bittery greens. The grilled chicken cut through the salad with ease and offered a perfect contrasting element to this light and delicious meal!

at a low simmer…
-R

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