Tomato and Asparagus Soup with White Beans

This is a tangy and rich soup that will use up some of those tomatoes you canned. You can make it vegan by using veggie stock. It’s an easy soup to whip up from common pantry items.

28 oz canned tomatoes, diced or crushed
28 oz stock, veggie or chicken
1/2 cup red wine
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 TB olive oil
1 1/2 C cooked white beans, drained and rinsed
1 stalk asparagus, cut into bite sized pieces

Place all the ingredients in a stock pot and bring to a simmer. Simmer 20 minutes until veggies are tender and beans are flavored with broth. Serve as is or sprinkle on some cheese!


Warm Quinoa and White Bean Salad

Quinoa is used in many Latin influenced dishes. This is more of a Mediterranean flavor inspired dish. It’s also very quick and easy. It’s a budget friendly dish that would be great to serve at a luncheon. It’s also low fat, high protein, and high fiber.

I used garlic stuffed olives!

1 1/2 C dry quinoa
3 C water or stock
12 oz white beans, cooked, drained & rinsed
1 pint grape tomates
1 small spanish onion, chopped
1/3 C vinaigrette (your favorite home made or farmer’s market blend will work great)

salad greens and olives for serving

In a large stock pot or chef’s pan, add everything and heat on medium-low. Stir well to incorporate all ingredients one time. Cover. Keep covered. After 20 minutes, remove from heat. Let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Serve over greens. Garnish with olives.

You can also make this in a rice cooker!

*** You can use any Italian vinaigrette you have on hand or make a simple one using

1 C vinegar
2 C olive oil
3 TB dried Italian seasoning blend (or make your own unique mix of oregano, marjoram, parsley, basil, dried garlic, red pepper flakes, saffron)
1 TB sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp black pepper

Indian Style Cabbage Salad

It’s cabbage season. Here is something to do with it other than make traditional slaw.

Cabbage Salad Served with Tandoori Chicken and Creamy Lentils

1 head green cabbage, shredded
2 tomatoes, diced
juice from 3 limes – about 4 TB
juice from 2 lemons – about 4 TB
3 tsp garam masala
2 tsp chili powder
1 small diced green chili
2 tsp salt

Toss all ingredients together in a large bowl. When dicing the tomatoes, transfer juices from cutting board to the salad bowl for added moisture. Coat cabbage well in seasoning and juices. Let rest in the fridge for at least 20 minutes before serving. This can be made up to 1 day in advance.

Pick-a-Filling Enchiladas

Enchiladas are a great make ahead meal. They are always good left overs. Everyone likes them. This is a versatile recipe that can be filled with just about anything.

Served with Guac and Sour Cream!

For the Sauce:

1/3 Cup minced yellow onion (1 small)
3+ cloves minced garlic
1 Cup veggie or chicken stock
1 Cup tomato puree
1 TB cumin
1 TB oregano
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp mexican saffron
dash turmeric

To taste: salt, hot sauce– I add my demon sauce to this for a very intense multi-chile flavor.

Add all ingredients to a sauce pot. Simmer, stirring occasionally for 20 minutes. This can be made ahead: up to 10 days in the fridge or frozen for weeks. This makes enough sauce to cover about 8 enchiladas. The recipe can easily be doubled or tripled for feeding large crowds.

Filling for 8 enchiladas:

1 lb ground chicken, beef, or turkey
8 oz chopped mushrooms and 1 Cup refried beans
your family’s fav taco/ burrito filling

seasoned with 2-3 TB taco seasoning, depending on your taste for heat.

CHEESE! Sprinkle in queso blanco, monterrey jack, pepper jack, cheddar, or a blend of cheeses as you roll your enchiladas. If you are making just cheese enchiladas, a blend is best. 1 Cup of cheese should fill 8 enchiladas when mixed with another filling. For cheese only, you’ll need about 3 Cups.

8 Corn or gluten-free tortillas, 6-8 inch size.

Spread a few tablespoons of sauce over the bottom of a casserole dish. This will keep the enchiladas from sticking to the pan. Fill tortillas with your filling mixture and roll them. Lay them carefully in the casserole dish, squeezing them together to hold the roll closed. An 8×8 inch pan usually holds 6 enchiladas.

Top with shredded cheese.

Pour sauce evenly over rolled enchiladas. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and brown. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving. Serve with guacamole, sour cream, or you favorite veggie salad.

** For a vegan meal, stuff with veggies, tempeh, and vegan cheese. Commercial steak sauces are often vegan and can add a real kick to sauteed mushrooms, peppers, and onions.

Roasted Tomatoes Stuffed with Goat Cheese

Hot-house tomatoes are showing up in the CSA box over and over again. Fortunately, there is plenty of goat cheese in my fridge. This is a super simple appetizer or add a bean salad and have a fabulous light meal. It seems fancy, so everyone will think you worked hard. Here is the recipe per tomato so you can male as much or as little as you like.

Pre-roast the tomatoes: Wash them well, slice off the tops, and roast flat side down. Place them in a shallow baking dish drizzled with evoo. I also use my cast iron skillet for this. Roast 15 minutes at 375 degrees F.

Cool the tomatoes for a  few moments before handling to keep things in tact. They can be very squishy at this point.

Turn the roasted tomatoes over so their bald tops are face-up. Scoop out the flesh with a table spoon, removing seeds and excess fluid. (Save it for veggie stock or to toss with pasta later. Or mix it with your dog’s food, like I do.)

Sprinkle 1 tsp parmesan cheese into the cavity. Spoon in 1 oz goat cheese. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Place tomatoes cheese-side up on baking dish. Return to oven for 15 minutes until goat cheese is hot and bubbly. Let rest 3 minutes before serving.

Lazy Low-Carb Italian – 4 Ingredients!

Spaghetti squash is cool. Plants do amazing things. Here is a super easy dish that’s perfect for a lazy weekend meal.

Prep 1 spaghetti squash for baking. Slice in half long-ways and scoop seeds and stringy stuff. Bake at 375 degrees F for 40 minutes, until squash done.

2 Ingredient sauce:

1 26 oz jar of super-yummy organic marinara sauce
4 Italian chicken sausages, removed from casing

Heat sausage over medium heat and break apart into fine crumbs. Brown completely. Stir in jarred sauce. Cover and simmer 10+ minutes.

Shred squash with a fork to make spaghetti strings. Top with simple sauce. Sprinkle with parmesan.

Anyone can make this.

Saffron Quinoa

Quinoa is an easy and healthy grain from South America. It cooks very similar to rice and makes a healthy alternative. It contains many of the amino acids your body needs to build and repair. It is a great grain for vegetarians! Serve this up with your next Latin inspired meal or as the base for your favorite taco filling. This is a basic recipe that lends itself to a variety of additions and variations.

Quinoa with Refried Beans

2 Cups Quinoa
4 Cups herb broth or veggie stock
2 tsp saffron
3 TB tomato paste

In a large stock pot, dry toast the quinoa over medium high heat, stirring constantly for about 3 minutes. You’ll hear the grains begin to pop. Whisk in broth, tomato paste, and saffron until fully incorporated. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes until quinoa is tender.

Dress it up with these great stir-in ideas:

*Garlic sauteed sweet corn kernels, seasoned canned tomatoes, onions, and diced green chiles

*Fresh green peas, parmesan cheese, and then topped with southwestern grilled salmon

*Crisp tender broccoli, marinated mushrooms, and cheddar

*Browned ground turkey and taco seasoning then fill a pablano chile and bake!

Amaranth Stuffed Eggplant

Eggplant is easy to cook with and has a hearty texture for veggie-based meals. Try out this warm dish full of minerals and amino acids to boost your system for flu season. Amaranth is high in Lysine, an amino acid that helps your body fight viruses.

Stuffed Eggplant over gluten-free pasta alfredo

Stuffed Eggplant over gluten-free pasta alfredo

1 Eggplant sliced lengthwise and scooped out, flesh diced

1 purple onion diced

8 oz mushrooms rough chopped

3/4 C Amaranth

14 oz canned tomatoes

hand full of fresh basil, chopped

1/2 Cup water

1 herb bouillon cube

olive oil

chili flakes

After scooping the eggplant, invert the shells to let them drain.

Add diced eggplant, onions, mushrooms, and olive oil to saute pan over medium heat. Stir and brown for about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, amaranth, water, and bouillon cube. Stir to combine. Cover and simmer 15 min until amaranth is tender, stirring occasionally.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Add eggplant mixture bake to shells and bake for 30 minutes.

Serve over gluten-free pasta or sprinkle with cheese.

Published in: on October 15, 2009 at 7:55 am  Leave a Comment  
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Spicy Tomato Cream Sauce with Gluten-Free Penne

This is a wonderfully flavorful vegetarian pasta dish that is smokey and spicy. The dish can be topped with Italian sausage, chicken, tempeh, or enjoyed as is.


1 Tb evoo

1 purple onion sliced thin

8 oz mushrooms sliced

1 TB Italian seasoning

5 cloves garlic, rough chopped

14 oz canned diced tomatoes

1 pint heavy cream

2 TB crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 Cup parmesan cheese

1 lb gluten-free penne

Put pasta on to boil. Saute garlic, onions, and mushrooms with evoo until carmelization just begins. Add tomatoes and stir to remove brown bits from the bottom. Heat to bubbling. Add red pepper flakes and cream. Stir and reduce heat to simmer. Simmer uncovered for 8-10 minutes until mixture is reduced nearly to 1/2.

Drain pasta well, do not rinse. Stir pasta into simmering sauce. Sprinkle in cheese and serve.

EASY Tomato Bisque

My favorite comfort food! This is a great quick soup you can make from all the tomatoes you canned this year. I use a ton of basil from my ever-growing basil plant that doesn’t know the season has ended.


28 oz can of diced tomatoes

28 oz can of crushed tomatoes

8 oz cream cheese

1 cube salt-free herb bouillon

1/2 cup water

2 tsp dried thyme

salt and pepper to taste

handfuls of chopped fresh basil

Put all of the ingredients in a large stock pot reserving half of the chopped basil. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally until cream cheese is uniformly melted through. I let this soup simmer 15-20 minutes. Add the remaining basil and stir through. The basil will turn bright green and look lovely in this soup. Serve!

This can also be placed in a crock pot with an additional 1/2 cup of water. Set to low and let simmer for no more than 3 hours.

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