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Archive for the tag “tomatoes”

Carrot Tomato Soup: Tastiest and Simplest Ever

One of my favorite inventions this summer has been this Carrot Tomato Soup.  I started with the most basic ingredients- carrots, tomato sauce, water and salt.  And then before I decided what to add next, I tasted it: perfect.  Stop there!

Simple, tasty and healthy, it’s the perfect summer soup.

Carrot Tomato Soup

1 pound carrots, scrubbed or peeled and then diced
8oz tomato sauce (1 small can)
8oz water (could substitute milk or cream for a creamier soup)
1 tsp sea salt
Black pepper to taste
Optional: olive oil to drizzle on top

1. Boil or steam carrots until tender.  Let cool.

2. In a food processor or blender, combine carrots with tomato sauce, and water.  Blend until smooth.

3. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Put in fridge if you’d like to serve a chilled soup, or reheat on stovetop for a warm soup.  May also serve room temperature, as is my custom.  You may choose to drizzle some olive oil on top of each portion before serving.


Muir Glen Reserve 2009 Tomatoes


As a very enthusiastic tomato (and canned tomato) eater, I was thrilled when Julie from Muir Glen offered to send me a limited-edition 2009 Reserve tomato kit.

The prestige and quality of reserve wine, now available in tomato form!

Each 2009 Reserve kit includes:

1. One can each of the Muir Glen Organic Yolo Red diced and Muir Glen Organic Brigade whole peeled tomatoes.  The Yolo Red diced and the Brigade whole peeled canned tomatoes were grown specifically for Muir Glen under certified organic practices and hand-harvested in Yolo County, California. These two exclusive varieties of 2009 Reserve tomatoes were picked at the peak of ripeness and packed the same day.  Yolo Red Diced Tomatoes are sweeter than most, high in lycopene and allow you to create wonderful bruschettas, salsas and soups.   Brigade Whole Peeled Tomatoes are full and plump, have consistent bright red color and are perfect to use in your favorite lasagna, pasta sauce or stew recipes.

2. One can each of the Muir Glen Organic Fire Roasted diced and Adobo Seasoned petite diced tomatoes: the classic favorites!

3. Recipe cards from award-winning chefs and The Diary of a Tomato booklet with 25 delicious tomato recipes

When I received this kit, I was blown away.  It is beautifully packaged and would make a fabulous gift.  The tomatoes are all delicious and the recipe booklet is inspiring.  And, best of all, the kit could easily sell for $30, yet it is only $7.  Even more amazing, $3 of each purchase through March 31, 2010 will be donated to worthy causes.

Here is the website to order but hurry, since Reserve 2009 will only last so long!

Tomato Soup with Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Extract

I have a new favorite vanilla.  It’s Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract.

I also have a new favorite recipe for tomato soup.  It comes from the cookbook pictured above: A Century of Flavor: Nielsen-Massey Vanillas.  Guess what it has in it?

The exact recipe title is Fresh Basil-Tomato Soup with Vanilla.  I made it on a drizzly night in late March, one of those nights when the apartment is chilly and you realize that your landlord has turned off the heat in your building since spring has technically arrived.

The kitchen filled with the smells of tomatoes, onions, basil, and italian seasoning.  And then, a hit of sweetness: vanilla!

A new and welcome combination.

Muir Glen Organic Chipotle Salsa

Muir Glen Organic Chipotle Salsa is delicious.  Of course, I’ve hardly ever met a salsa I didn’t like.  It’s got a nice bite without being super spicy.  It’s a bit smokey and the tiniest bit sweet.  Yum.

Ingredients: Organic Diced Tomatoes in Juice, Organic Tomato Puree (Organic Tomato Paste, Water), Organic Onions, Organic Green Bell Pepper, Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, Organic Garlic, Sea Salt, Organic Cilantro, Organic Vinegar, Organic Chipotle Pepper Powder, Naturally Derived Citric Acid, Natural Smoke Flavor (Contains Organic Malted Barley Flour), Naturally Derived Calcium Chloride.

Love salsa? Also see:Mountain Gringo Salsa

Love chips?  Also see: Garden of Eatin’ Sesame Blues and Tostitos Baked! SCOOPS!

Dad’s Ham, Olive and Tomato Sandwiches

Ham, olive and tomato sandwiches (H.O.T.s): The new B.L.T.s!

Recipe by Dad

1. Make a B.L.T just like always except:

Swap leftover Christmas ham for the bacon;

Swap pimento-stuffed green olives for the lettuce;

Keep the tomato;

Add mayo or mustard to a bun

2. Assemble and devour.

Note: This tastes best when eaten in the company of your dad.  Especially if your dad loves leftovers as much as mine.

Dave’s Gourmet Organic Spicy Heirloom Marinara

Dave’s Gourmet Spicy Heirloom Marinara Organic Pasta Sauce proves that bottled pasta sauces are capable of incredible things. 

1. It’s way easier and quicker than homemade.

2. It’s tastier than homemade.

3. I know this because I tried to recreate this pasta sauce.  No matter the organic spicy heirloom ingredients I threw into it, the flavors fell short.

4. Time to take on this challenge yourself… or by gifting it to someone who might be inspired to try.

Dave’s Gourmet, $7.99

Cupboard Staple: Green Mountain Gringo Salsa

There are two types of people: those who eat salsa with corn chips and those who eat salsa with almost everything.

I always have at least two or three jars of salsa stocked in my cabinet, often Green Mountain Gringo in its medium, hot, and roasted garlic varieties. Mexican dishes are obvious matches (burritos, enchiladas, tacos) but I also love a splash of salsa in rice, salads, pastas, and potatoes. It’s a good substitute for fresh tomatoes and is helpful for added spice.

Another benefit of this brand of salsa is that its packaging is a glass Mason jar. I wash the jars, remove the labels and re-use them for canning or storing dried beans or other supplies in the pantry.

Tomatoes in the Summer: Straight up, in the garden

There are two types of people: those who enjoy tomatoes plain, and those who don’t.

I was in the latter camp until I started paying more attention to seasonality and quality of produce. Now, when I get a tomato that is perfectly ripe and juicy, the best way to eat it is plain. In the garden, right after it’s picked.

If you don’t pick it from the plant, you can enjoy it in your kitchen with some sprinkled sea salt and freshly ground pepper.

Mozzarella, basil and olive oil don’t hurt, either.

The above photo is my dad. We were touring the gigantic garden of a Hutterite Colony near Conrad, Montana.

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