Culinary Treasures

working girl cuisine: tomato bisque

Hello November!  New month = new blog segment!

In this new feature, once a month I will spotlight a recipe that even the girl on the go can prepare and serve with ease. Often times after a long hard day making bank, I don’t feel like cooking.  But instead of spending all my money I just made on fast food or going out to eat, I’ve found some good go-to, cost-effective recipes that are not time-consuming and make for some amazing leftovers.

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Best Tomato Soup Recipe ever!

Truth be told I don’t even like tomato soup.  But when I came across this recipe my whole world changed.  (Actually, when I first had Beach Bar‘s famous tomato soup my whole world changed. And this recipe is very similar to that, so all you Beach Bar lovers back in Michigan & beyond: take note!)

Yes, this amazing soup may be a little on the rich and hearty side, but it’s super easy to make, and absolutely PERFECT for the crisp fall weather.  There will be plenty of leftovers to share, but I’m not lying when I say that this soup actually is better the 2nd day or 3rd day.

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TOMATO BISQUE    (6-8 servings)

Ingredients:

  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp basil (dried)
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 5 cans Campbell’s tomato soup
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1 8oz stick of cream cheese, softened at room temp
  • Mozzarella cheese, shredded or freshly crumbled (optional)
  • Garlic croutons (optional)
  1. Sauté butter and minced onion together in a large saucepan for about 5-7 minutes on medium heat.
  2. Add seasonings, diced tomatoes and tomato soup and mix together.
  3. Add the half and half and cream cheese ( note: the softer the cream cheese the better it mixes in. You could even put in the microwave for a few seconds before adding)
  4. Mix all ingredients together until well blended. Turn up heat to high for a few minutes until soup is very hot, almost bubbly. The reduce heat to medium-low, and cook for at least 10 minutes.   (The longer the ingredients mix together the better the soup will be. I think it tastes best a couple of days after you make it.)
  5. Top with mozzarella cheese and garlic croutons if you desire, and serve!

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Happy weekend!!!  xo

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healthy turkey meatloaf (you won’t even miss the beef!)

Hola friends.  The other day I made this treasure for dinner.  It’s been a favorite in our household since I saw it on the Today Show a few years back.  The best part is that it’s pretty healthy – only 205 calories and 3.5 grams of fat per slice!

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Mom’s Turkey Meatloaf, by Ellie Krieger

Ingredients:

3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup nonfat milk
1 medium onion, peeled
2 pounds ground turkey breast (I buy the extra lean)
1/2 cup seeded and chopped red bell pepper (1/2 medium pepper)
2 large eggs, beaten
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
1/2 teaspoon salt
Black pepper to taste (I usually use 1/4 teaspoon)
One 8-ounce can no-salt-added tomato sauce

Gather your ingredients and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

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Thinly slice about a 1/4 to 1/3 of the onion into rings, and set aside.   Finely chop the remainder of the onion.

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Then chop your red pepper.

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Mix your oats and milk in a small bowl.  Let sit for a few minutes.

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Combine the milk-oats mixture, eggs, gr. turkey, veggies, ketchup, salt, pepper, and Worcestershire sauce into a large bowl.

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Mix all ingredients.  (As in, with your hands! Don’t be afraid to get them dirty 🙂 )

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Now transfer your giant meatball into a 9 x 13 baking dish.  Form into a log that is about 5″ wide by 2″ high.

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Top with tomato sauce and onion.  Fact: putting the little onion rings on top is my favorite part (yes I’m a huge dork).

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Bake at  350 degrees for about an hour to an hour and a 1/2.  Thermometer should read 160 in the middle of the loaf.

Remove from the oven and let sit for 10-15 minutes before slicing.   Serve with your favorite side of veggies!  Hope you enjoy!!

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(Recipe Source:  Ellie Krieger)

leftover turkey recipes and other delish info.

It’s Sunday and that means tomorrow is Monday and it’s back to work.  Already.  I never can believe how fast days off seem to fly by.  Over these last 4 days I’ve had the most relaxation since the move, and its been delightful!  Turkey day was a beautiful 75 degrees, and was filled with lots of cider apple sangria, bocce ball, board games, and comfort food.  Our house was maxed out at 10 people, and it was lovely.

Tonight I’ve held true to my annual post T-day tradition:  cooking up a turkey pot pie.  For me, it’s almost more anticipated than the turkey itself.  I love gathering the leftovers and putting them together to make this old fashioned, satisfying treat.

Mouthwater picture just for you:

Here’s what goes into my recipe:
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 small onion
  • 3 carrots
  • 4-5 tablespoons flour
  • 1 can of chicken stock
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2-3 cups leftover turkey
  • 1/2 can peas
  • ground parsley
  • spices you enjoy ( I use Mrs. Dash Garlic & Herb, Garlic powder, and seasoned pepper)
  • 1 frozen and 1 refrigerated pie crust
  • egg (to rub on top of pie crust)

You just melt the butter and saute the onion in it, while boiling the potatoes & carrots for about 5 mins.  Then drain the potatoes and carrots, and add the butter and onion in, mixing in the flour.  Cook this mix for about 2 mins, then add chicken stock and bring to a simmer.  Stir in the turkey, peas, and spices.  Pour into thawed pie crust, then top with other one, and bake at 350 degrees for about 30 mins until golden brown.

Want some other ideas for turkey leftovers?  Real Simple has some great ideas that you should check out.

(Above Photo:  Turkey & Barley Salad, from realsimple.com)

life in texas

Well since we’ve moved and gotten settled, I thought I’d take the chance to show ya’ll some of highlights of life in Texas so far:

We discovered Naegelin’s Bakery, which is located about 3 minutes from our house in downtown New Braunfels.  Texas’ oldest bakery!

cherry donut = amazingness.

My first try at homemade cheesecake for Nate’s birthday…..and was it delicious.  Not that I’m a pro or anything, but we both thought it was the BEST cheesecake we’ve ever had.  He credits the cook, I credit the recipe and my ability to follow directions.

Also for Nate’s birthday we drove up to Dallas for the Lions/Cowboys game.

The size of Cowboys Stadium is almost as big as the ego of their fans…… let’s just say the better team won! 🙂     (a little sports trash talk never killed anybody)

This is how my 2 loves spend most of their free time.  🙂

Last weekend, I took a drive out to Canyon Lake.  It was absolutely beautiful.