Saturday, August 13, 2011


I have been a lifelong tomato hater. Unless they are mashed up and made into some sort of sauce or salsa I was not touching them. Then this week we ordered bruschetta at a cafe for dinner and I loved it. I tried to replicate it at home. I had pretty good results but I think I can do better next time.

Sourdough bread
1 tablespoon Oregano
2 tablespoons Basil
2 tomatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup balsamic vinegar
pepper to taste
mozzarella  cheese

Step 1: Chop up your tomatoes. I chopped them like shown below. Jon thought they were too chunky so he chopped them up some more. Sprinkle with salt and set aside.
Bring balsamic vinegar to a boil and then turn down the heat. You want it to reduce quite a bit. I reduced mine to about half a cup but I was hungry and impatient.
While that is reducing chop your garlic. Or make your husband do it like I did.
Then combine the garlic and olive oil together in a bowl and microwave for 30 seconds.
Toss the tomatoes with the basil, oregano, and oil mixture. Crack some pepper over the top.
I was so hungry that I got into a big hurry and didn't even try to make this look great. I just sliced a couple of bread slices in half. I was suppose to toast it but was just like "I'm hungry!  Forget the toaster!"
Then I topped the bread with the tomatoes.
Then I poured the balsamic vinegar over the top and topped off with slices of mozzarella.
It doesn't look that pretty. It tasted really good. We scarfed it all down. Like I said, so hungry!
Jon says next time we should toast the bread, pour the balsamic vinegar over it, top with tomatoes and mozzarella and pop it in the oven for a few minutes and then top with more balsamic vinegar. Since we have everything we need to make it again I will update after we try that method.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Guest Blog: Zucchini Soup

I've been really lazy this week and ate the lemony orzo salad and chocolate orange muffins all week long. I didn't make a single new thing. Fortunately for me, my friend Emilie, the author of Teaching Ain't For Heroes, made some soup which looks delicious. Emilie is a public school teacher in Kentucky and her blog always has an interesting and insightful perspective on the rewards and challenges of teaching.

I got the recipe from here and decided to tweak it. It's hot outside, so I thought a nice chilled soup would be delicious.


Our ingredients are:
6 Zucchini (I really like Zucchini and I wanted it to be thicker)

1 1/2 tablespoons of Minced Garlic (I don't think I like shallots, but I like garlic!)

3 tablespoons of Curry Powder

1/2 teaspoon of Cumin

1/4 teaspoon of Turmeric

1 1/2 teaspoon of Salt

1/2 teaspoon of Black Pepper

3 cups Chicken Broth (I had no stock, but I had broth!)

1/4 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper

2 tablespoons Lite Cream Cheese

Wash your zucchini and get to cutting.


Roughly cut the zucchini into quartered slices. After you have finished cutting, you can start your cooking. This is the only real prep you have to do.

I combined all of my spices into a single bowl as I needed my measuring spoons for the olive oil and didn't want olive oil in any of my spices.


Put your olive oil in the pan along with the minced garlic and turn on your stove to low medium (I have gas, so I just watch the flame).


Pour in your zucchini.


Cover and let them sweat a bit. After they have gotten a bit soft, you can add your spices.


It starts looking really delicious.


Your kitchen should start smelling deliciously spicy. This is when you add your chicken broth.


Let me tell you my secret. I didn't take the soup out and blend it. I use an immersion blender. I can blend while it cooks by using this handy thing.


The secret is the spinning blade at the bottom. It blends and stirs the food without having to worry about a mess.


And blend!


After a few minutes, it looks like this.


The original recipe called for creme fraiche. I did not care for the amount of calories in this. I cheated and instead used lite cream cheese to get that delicious creaminess.


I used the immersion blender to get that mixed in well. When everything was finished, I chilled it for several hours in the fridge. I garnished my first bowl with some extra curry.


It was delicious. It's not very filling, but at 112 calories, I don't expect it to be. You read that right. 112 calories. As I prepared it, this is the nutritional breakdown. Yes, Weight Watchers (Points Plus) people. This soup is just 3 points per serving. You can eat the entire pot for 18 points. Enjoy.

  Total Fat5.6 g
     Saturated Fat1.2 g
     Polyunsaturated Fat0.7 g
     Monounsaturated Fat3.3 g
     Trans Fat0.0 g
  Cholesterol5.0 mg
  Sodium514.1 mg
  Potassium928.7 mg
  Total Carbohydrate16.0 g
     Dietary Fiber5.0 g
     Sugars6.5 g
  Protein3.1 g