Posts Tagged ‘tomatoes’

Farmer’s Market Pasta

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Is it just me, or do the veggies at the farmer’s market look just a little bit brighter and just a little more enticing as the weather gets hotter? In my heat-induced delirium I choose to believe that it is nature’s way of drawing me in as the heat intensifies and my resolve to cook wanes…

Because my resolve to cook is waning… Can’t use the oven, too hot to grill, tired of salads, what’s a cook to do??? With a counter covered in produce and the air filled with the smell of basil, this quick pasta recipe is a lovely way to get dinner on the table!

Gather Up:
3 pounds garden tomatoes, mixed varieties if you wish, peeled and quartered
3 large cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
1/3 cup olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ pound penne pasta, cooked al dente
2 teaspoons sugar
½ pound loose Italian turkey sausage
3 zucchini, or summer squash of your choice, sliced and halved
¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan
Large handful fresh basil leaves

In a large heavy sauté pan put the garlic and the tomatoes. Drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cook slowly over medium low heat until the tomatoes are falling apart and their juices have mixed with the olive oil to form a nice sauce, about 30 minutes. Stir in the sugar and taste for seasoning.

In a separate sauté pan, heat a few splashes of olive oil and sauté the sausage until brown and caramelized. Remove. Add another splash of olive oil if needed and sauté the zucchini until caramelized around the edges.

Add the sausage and zucchini to the tomato sauce. Toss in the cooked pasta.

Remove from heat, and gently work in the Parmesan with tongs. Top with torn basil leaves and serve.

Adapted from Tyler Florence: Quick Farmer’s Market Pasta

Ur Mom’s Tortilla Soup

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

Everyone I know eats tortilla soup. And everyone I know has their own special version of tortilla soup. This is my version.

For the record, I use lots of veggies (do u know me at all?), I like my chicken diced and not shredded (shredded is too stringy for me), I luv to swirl some dairy through the broth (sour cream is my favorite), and I prefer the tortilla part crispy and salty (soft tortillas act as a thickener and this version is full of veggies).

That being said, and all disclaimers aside, this soup is a crowd pleaser! It is a dish that comes together fast because there is only a quick simmer once everything is in the pot. And yes, there are lots of leftovers!

Gather Up:
3 ears corn, cut off cob
1 large sweet pepper, chopped
1 ½ pounds chicken breast, diced
¾ teaspoon sage
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon dried parsley
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
Pinch ginger
1 teaspoon cumin
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Canola oil
2 carrots, diced
1 medium zucchini, diced
1 medium red onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 – 2 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, minced
1 28-ounce can fire roasted crushed tomatoes
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
4 cups organic low-sodium chicken broth
Blue corn tortilla chips
½ cup sour cream

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Line a sheet pan with foil. Lightly toss corn and sweet pepper with 1 tablespoon oil in a bowl and spread on pan. Roast until golden and beginning to soften 15 – 20 minutes. Remove and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large deep pan over medium heat. Add diced chicken to pot and season with sage, onion powder, parsley, white pepper, ginger, cumin, salt and pepper. Lightly brown chicken.

Add carrots, zucchini, onion, garlic and 1 – 2 chipotle peppers. Reserve adobo sauce on the side. Cook with chicken 5 – 7 minutes to soften.

Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, stock and a few teaspoons of adobo sauce, to taste.

Bring to a simmer. Add roasted corn and peppers and continue to simmer briefly while you assemble bowls, chips and sour cream.

Serve immediately with a swirl of sour cream and blue tortilla chips.

Italian Potato Salad

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

One last gigantic cookout at the end of the summer can leave even the most dedicated cook feeling a little overwhelmed… The heat, the stove, the grill, the menu, the prep work, the shopping, the clean-up… umm, did I say that out loud?

The truth is the whole clan will come together for Labor Day from where ever they come from, and the food will be a given. At least in their eyes it is a given!

So how to muster the energy for a final blowout? For me, it is time alone with the colors and the smells of late summer in my kitchen. Smooth waxy potatoes. Glossy purple eggplant. Peppers of red, green, yellow and all colors in-between. The shiny skin of a crimson onion. Fragile sun-kissed tiny tomatoes. The overwhelming heady aroma of a bunch of basil.

Feeling energized? See how that works? Mother Nature’s wakeup call! (And on a less silly note, this salad is SUPPOSED to sit on the counter for 4 to 6 hours before serving to give the flavors time to blend… Hey, Ur Mom does what she can…)

Gather Up:
2 Pounds Red Potatoes, washed and cut into chunks
4 Green Onions, sliced
3 Small Eggplant, roughly chopped
4 Assorted Peppers, roughly chopped
1 Red Onion, sliced
¼ Cup Olive Oil
Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper
½ Pound Cherry or Pear Tomatoes, halved
2 Ears Corn, blanched and shucked, if available
20 Basil Leaves
½ Cup Olive Oil
¼ Cup White Wine Vinegar
2 Cloves Garlic, sliced
½ Teaspoon Kosher Salt
¼ Teaspoon Dry Mustard
1 Teaspoon Sugar
1 ½ Teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce

Cook the red potatoes in boiling salted water until just tender. Drain in a colander and immediately stir the green onions through the hot potatoes. Leave to cool.

Meanwhile toss the eggplant, peppers and red onion in ¼ cup olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast in a 375 degree oven until caramelized and tender.

Transfer the cooled potatoes to a large serving dish. Add the roasted vegetables and all of the drippings to the potatoes.

Mix the olive oil, white wine vinegar, garlic, salt, dry mustard, sugar and Worcestershire sauce together thoroughly. (An immersion blender works well if available.)

Pour the dressing over the veggies and mix gently. Add the tomatoes and the corn and continue to mix gently. Cover and let sit at room temperature for 4 to 6 hours, stirring about once an hour.

At serving time, taste for seasoning and add torn basil.

Rustic Tomato Tart

Monday, August 16th, 2010

UPDATED: If you clicked over from Foodie Fights, welcome! Thank you so much for visiting our blog. If you like what you see, please take a moment to vote for this recipe in Battle Tomato and Corn! And, thank you again to Foodie Fights for featuring our Tomato Tart.

Sometimes I feel like everyone makes pastry except me. Why can I attack a mountain of pickles or an avalanche of pecans without batting an eye, but the thought of rolling out a flaky pastry crust sends me straight to the frozen food case…??!!

I mean, I do buy an organic pie crust made without icky shortening products, but half the time its frozen crankiness splits down the middle, and the rest of the time the filling soaks in and renders it less-than-flaky.

So when I got a look at this sweet corn and these heirloom tomatoes I knew the time had come to GET REAL. (Plus my sister gave me a cookbook for my b-day that had a free form pastry crust in it that was calling my name!)

I started this recipe at 11:00 in the morning. Fueled up with coffee and alone in the house it was now or never! I’m proud to report the dang dough worked! I sandwiched it between two pieces of plastic wrap and rolled it out – genius advice from the book!

This coming after I worked the butter into the flour with my fingers…”rubbed the butter into the flour,” in the words of my new cookbook, which blithely stated, “why bother with a food processor for such a small job, it hardly seems worth getting it dirty…” AGREED. (Plus…our dishwasher broke this weekend, so while we’re waiting for some repair help I’m trying to avoid using anything that needs to be washed…)

I smeared the raw dough with some pesto I had left from another “project,” and then scattered fresh corn niblets and a little white cheese under the glorious tomatoes I honored with my first-ever pastry dough!

Gather Up:
1 Recipe Pastry Dough, rolled into a 12 inch round and chilled
1/3 cup fresh Basil Pesto
1 ½ cups fresh corn, blanched and cut off cobs
3 heirloom tomatoes, assorted colors, sliced
½ cup mild white cheese, Monterey jack or your choice
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 tablespoon freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 egg yolk lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon water

Place a pizza stone in the oven and heat oven to 375 degrees.

Place Pastry Dough round on a sheet of parchment paper covering a baking sheet.

Spread Basil Pesto over dough, leaving a 1 ½ inch edge all the way around.

Scatter corn and cheese over round.

Arrange tomato slices over the ingredients, season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Fold the edge up and over the filling, forming loose pleats. (If dough has become too soft to form, return tart to the refrigerator to chill dough.) Brush border with egg yolk.

Slide the parchment paper with the tart off the baking sheet onto the pizza stone. (Another great tip from the book!) Bake 45 minutes, until browned and filling is sizzling.

Cut into wedges and serve. Equally good warm or at room temperature!

Recipe adapted from Cooking from the Farmers’ Market.

Summer Heaven Veggie Sandwich

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

(Or otherwise known as: The Sandwich Which is God’s Compensation for the Heat in Texas…)

And sweet compensation is it! It’s no small matter to taste the broiling sun in the juice of a tomato, or to sense the coolness of the shade coming off an eggplant, or to brush clumps of local grit off an onion… And peppers! Don’t get me started on the green ones, the yellow ones, the orange ones, the long ones, the fat ones, all of them defying the scorching sun by growing bigger and bigger and producing more and more!!!

So we revel in the moment of it all. We miss this sandwich. We wait for this sandwich. We discuss how the winter was rainy so probably the summer will be cooler. But overwhelming waves of heat come. They always do. We complain and we head for the shade and the evening cool, which in Texas, never comes.

But just when heat stroke threatens us from every direction in rolls the first huge crop of summer veggies! And all of a sudden all is right with the world! It is summer. Our mouths are full of tomatoes. Peppers sit waiting to be blackened and chopped into salsa. And there are sandwiches for dinner! Just right. Fresh. Wonderful. Go on. Give in to it. U know u want to!

Gather Up:
1 eggplant, sliced
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 ciabatta, lightly toasted
2 cups assorted peppers of your choice
2 tomatoes, sliced
1 red onion
1/4 cup feta cheese
2 tablespoons fresh chopped oregano leaves

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees, and line a baking sheet with foil. Place eggplant slices and red onion slices on the foil. Brush them with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip each of the slices, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and bake for another 10 minutes. 

Slice peppers, and saute until tender crisp.

Cut the ciabatta into sections, and slice in half for sandwiches.


Remove grilled veggies from the oven…

…and pop the ciabatta in! Brush each of the sandwiches halves with olive oil, and sprinkle with garlic salt. They should be lightly toasted in about 5 minutes.

Crumble feta cheese, and sprinkle with oregano, salt and pepper. Spread feta cheese mixture on one side of the ciabatta.

Place eggplant slices, red onions and peppers on top of the feta.

Top with tomatoes, and season with salt and pepper.

Welcome to Summer Heaven…we’re glad you could join us!

Adapted from recipes by Zinc Cafe and Market in Laguna Beach, CA and Shady Grove right here in Austin, TX.

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Welcome to Like Mother Like Daughters...career gal, stay at home mom, college student. Just 3 girls who love to eat and are dedicated to doing it the old-fashioned way! Plan, shop, cook, bake, clean, sleep, repeat. Hope you enjoy - we are so glad you are here!
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