Tuscan Roasted Cauliflower Soup

This soup is very simple. When I had the roasted cauliflower in the pot with the stock, husband walked by and ate some and said that they were awesome. He was very disappointed that I used my immersion blender on them, however. I thought this soup was just okay. It was a little bland to me. I felt it needed something, but not sure what. It uses the Wegmans new Tuscan Seasoning Shak’r, which I guess it kind of essential to the recipe, so you can read the ingredients at the link.

rating: 7

Tuscan Roasted Cauliflower Soup
(Wegmans Menu magazine)

serves 6


1/2 tsp Wegmans Tuscan Seasoning Shak’r
1 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 pounds cauliflower florets
salt and pepper to taste
1 carton (32 ounces) vegetable stock
grated Parmigiano-Reggiano to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Add Tuscan seasoning and olive oil to large bowl; mix to combine. Add cauliflower florets; toss to coat.
2. Arrange cauliflower in single layer on parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Roast 35-45 minutes, turning halfway through, until browned and tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
3. Add roasted cauliflower and vegetable stock to stockpot. Bring to a boil on high; reduce heat to low; simmer 5-8 minutes until cauliflower is soft.
4. Puree soup to desired texture; season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.


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Simmered Pinto Beans with Chipotle Sour Cream

I served these with the Chilaquiles the other night! I did leave off the Chipotle sour cream, and just served them with plain ol’ sour cream. These were good! My 7 year old had 3 servings of them! Again, this didn’t make too much (does my family eat way more than they should??), so next time I would double the recipe.

rating: 8

Simmered Pinto Beans with Chipotle Sour Cream
(Cooking Light, Sept. 2014)

serves 6
time needed: 15 min.


2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup unsalted chicken stock (I used vegetarian “chicken” stock)
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (15-ounce) can unsalted pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
3/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
3 tablespoons low-fat buttermilk (I omitted)
1 1/2 teaspoons minced chipotle chiles, canned in adobo sauce (I omitted)


1. Heat a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add onion, bell pepper, cumin, and garlic; sauté 2 minutes. Add stock, salt, black pepper, and beans; simmer 7 minutes. Stir in juice and parsley.

2. Combine remaining ingredients; serve with beans.

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Chilaquiles and Eggs

I have never had this dish before, but I have to say, WOW, is this good! And it’s pretty easy, too! My only complaint is that it doesn’t make a whole lot, so I would double everything but the eggs next time. I left out the jalapenos so it wouldn’t be spicy for me and my daughter, and my husband and son just added hot sauce to theirs. Really, really good.

rating: 9.5

Chilaquiles and Eggs
(Cooking Light, Sept. 2014)

serves 6
time needed: 27 min.


2 large tomatoes, chopped
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded (I omitted)
1 cup organic vegetable broth
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup chopped red onion
4 cups tortilla chips (about 40 chips)
6 large eggs
1 ripe avocado, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup light sour cream
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro (I omitted)

1. Place tomatoes and jalapeños in a blender. Add broth, salt, and garlic. Cover and process on high speed for 1 minute or until smooth; set aside.

2. Heat a 12-inch sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add onion; sauté 2 minutes or until just tender, stirring occasionally. Add tomato mixture to pan. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low, and continue to simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Add chips to pan, and stir to coat with tomato mixture. Crack eggs, 1 at a time, over chips, evenly spacing them in a circle inside pan. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until eggs are set but still runny in the centers. Remove pan from heat. Arrange avocado slices over eggs. Top with dollops of sour cream and a sprinkle of cilantro. Serve immediately.


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Creamy Tomato Soup

This is the last recipe I tried from Tupelo Honey‘s cookbook, and man, was it good! This didn’t give us a lot of soup, though (maybe 3 bowls?), so next time, I would probably triple it. There’s not a whole lot to it, but maybe that’s what makes it so good! It’s the perfect tomato soup for a cool, fall day. Or a wintry snowy day. Or a hot summer day. Goood souppp!

rating: 9.5

Creamy Tomato Soup
(Tupelo Honey Cafe: Spirited Recipes from Asheville’s New South Kitchen)

1 24-ounce can crushed tomatoes, undrained
3 cups water
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 bay leaf
2 tsp sugar
1.5 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 cup heavy cream

Combine the tomatoes, water, tomato paste, bay leaf, sugar, and salt in a 4-cup heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil, immediately decrease the heat to medium, and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the mixture lightly coats the spoon. Whisk in the pepper and cream and continue cooking over medium heat for about 2 minutes, or until thoroughly blended.


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Artichoke Garlic Bread

This bread was pretty good, but I am not sure if I made it correctly. Only the bottom half of the bread contained the artichoke mixture, and top was just, well, bread. It tasted good, though, and we ate the whole loaf!

rating: 8

Artichoke Garlic Bread
(Supermarket Vegan, Donna Klein)
makes 16 pieces


2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
3-4 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 6-ounce jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained well and chopped
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp coarse salt
1 10-ounce baguette, preferably whole wheat, sliced lengthwise in half

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
In a small skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute, until fragrant and just beginning to brown. Remove the skillet from the heat and add the artichokes, oregano, and salt, tossing well to combine. Return the skillet to the heat and cook, stirring, 30 seconds. Set aside.
Pull most of the bread from both halves of the baguette, leaving 1/2″ thick shells. Set the shells aside and crumble the bread into a medium bowl. Add the artichoke mixture to the crumbs and toss well to combine. Spoon the artichoke-bread crumb mixture into the bottom bread shell and replace the top. Cit in half crosswise and wrap with foil. Place on a baking sheet and bake 20 minutes, until heated through. Remove the foil and slice each half crosswise into 8 equal pieces for a total of 16 pieces. Serve warm.

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Coconut Sweet Potato Bisque

It’s Tupelo Honey week at my house! This soup was soooo gooood! My husband and 7 year old had to put hot sauce in theirs, but that’s okay. This recipe doesn’t make much soup. We got maybe 3 bowls out of it, so next time I would probably triple it (so I can have some leftovers!). It says 6-8 servings, but I got a bowl for me, a bowl for husband, and two tiny bowls for the kids out of it. If you leave off the honey, this soup is vegan!

rating: 9

Coconut Sweet Potato Bisque
(Tupelo Honey Cafe: Spirited Recipes from Asheville’s New South Kitchen)

Makes 6 to 8 Servings


2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced
4 cups plus 4 1/2 teaspoons water
1 14-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
1 1/2 teaspoons tupelo honey
2 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper



In a 4-quart saucepan, combine the sweet potatoes and 4 cups of water over high heat, bring to a boil, and boil for about 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Reduce the heat to medium and, using a potato masher, mash the potatoes in the water. Add the coconut milk, brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and black pepper and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until it begins to thicken. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and the remaining 4 1/2 teaspoons water to form a thick paste. Add the cornstarch mixture and the cayenne to the soup and cook over low heat for about 5 minutes longer, or until it coats the back of a spoon. Use a handheld blender to puree the soup until smooth, or use a stand blender or food processor, working in batches, and transfer the soup back to the saucepan to keep warm.


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Garlic Ranch

Here’s another recipe from an awesome restaurant, Tupelo Honey! I did leave out the roasted honey because, well, I didn’t have any. The dressing tasted garlicky enough without it. This dressing is easy easy to make, and was really good!

rating: 9

Garlic Ranch
(Tupelo Honey Cafe: Spirited Recipes from Asheville’s New South Kitchen)


2/3 cup buttermilk
2/3 cup sour cream
2/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
2 tbsp chopped fresh chives
3 tbsp roasted garlic puree (optional)- I omitted
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper


Blend all ingredients in a food processor for 30 seconds. Refrigerate for up to 10 days.

photo (14)

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