Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Tomato Basil Soup and other easy recipes

A few weeks ago, it was cold, I was tired, & the groceries were running low. It was dinner time. What to do, what to do. I wanted soup. I wanted a sandwich. The thought of Nordstrom Cafe's tomato basil soup came to mind. MMMmmmmm. In that instant, I knew what had to be done.
I went scavenging for a recipe that didn't require cream or weird items. I came across this recipe and used it (modified) to create some very quick, yummy soup. Add a delicious ooey, gooey grilled cheese sandwich on 5 grain bread and dinner was served!

Pantry Tomato Basil Soup:
1 cup onion, chopped (I used frozen)
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2-4 Tbsp olive oil
1 c low sodium chicken stock/broth
2 28-oz can of tomatoes in some form, I used one of crushed tomatoes and 1 of whole stewed really doesn't matter too much
2-4 Tbsp dried basil (the recipe called for fresh but my basil plant wasn't up to the job yet)
2 tbsp dried parmesan
1 c milk (skim, 2% or whole)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp kosher salt (optional)

Topping: shredded parmesan cheese and bread croutons

1. Sautee onions in oil over med-high heat 3-5 min
2. Add in garlic and stir for another 3 min
3. Add in chicken broth, tomatoes and basil
4. Simmer for 20-30 min on low (I think I did this for maybe 10 min... I was lazy and impatient)
5. Dump it into a blender or food processor (work in batches if you need to); blend for 4-8 min until it's all smooth and creamy
6. Dump the smooth soup mix back into the stock pot. 
7. Stir in the milk and bring the soup back to a low simmer, add salt & pepper to taste
8.  Top with cheese, fresh olive oil and croutons

And here are some other recipes I've tried recently that went together pretty quickly and were yummy!
1. Roasted Asparagus Tomato Pasta with Goat Cheese...delicious. I loved the goat cheese and roasted asparagus
2. Banana Bread Waffles. If you have super ripe 'nanas sitting around this is a great way to use them up! I made a huge double batch, froze the leftover waffles and we've had them for breakfast a few days.
3. Carrot Cake mixer required. Does require some elbow grease for shreddin those carrots. I don't have any cutesy pictures.
1 c all purpose flour, unbleached
1 c whole white wheat flour
1/2-3/4 c sugar (I lean towards the 1/2 c)
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice (optional)
1/4 tsp cloves (optional)
1/2 c oil
1/2 c applesauce--the no sugar added kind (or plain greek yogurt)
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
3 c finely shredded carrots
1 c raisins
3/4 c chopped nuts (I recommend pecans or walnuts)
1 c very well drained crushed pineapple

1. Preheat the oven 350F, line muffin tin with muffin liners. shred carrots and drain pineapple, set it all aside
2. In large mixing bowl mix together all dry ingredients (flours, sugar, soda, powder, spices)
3. In a medium bowl mix together oil, applesauce, eggs, vanilla
4. Add egg mixture to dry ingredients and stir well. Add in carrots, raisins, nuts, and pineapple, stir well
5. Plop approx 1/4-1/3 c mixture into each muffin container.
6. Bake 20-25 min or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean

You can top them with plain cream cheese (Publix makes a vanilla cream cheese flavor that is PERFECT!) or you can whip some cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla together. 

No comments: