Monthly Archives: September 2011

Pan Seared Potatoes w/ a Basil-Garlic Aoili

There is something about potatoes that makes me happy.  They are the ultimate comfort food.  I don’t think I will ever tire of them. I just so happen to have gotten some pretty new potatoes in my CSA box and decided to whip myself up some for a late night supper.

I decided to steam them to cook them, then pan seared them in olive oil.  This gave the potatoes a creamy center with a wonderful crispy outside. Yum!  I made a quick aoili with some left over lemon basil to top it all off.


  • New potatoes, cleaned and cut in half
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • S&P

For the Aoili:

  • 1/2 C low-fat mayo
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 handful basil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • S&P
  • Skim milk (optional)

Steam your potatoes until you can stick a knife in the center easily.  Let cool to room temperature.

In a large skillet add potatoes to hot oil cut side down.  Don’t touch and let sear for 2-3 minutes or until a nice golden brown. Flip over and sear the other side.  Transfer to a paper towel lined plate, sprinkle with salt and pepper and set aside.

To make the aioli:

In a food processor chop the basil and garlic together until fine.  Add to mayo and add lemon juice.  Mix together well and season with salt and pepper to your liking.  I like my aoili on the thinner side to make it more like a sauce so I add skim milk until I get my desired consistency.

Spoon aoili over warm potatoes and thoroughly enjoy!



Posted by on September 29, 2011 in Uncategorized


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CSA Thursday

I haven’t posted in a while, I do apologize.  Cancer has taken over our lives.  Jeff has gone from a stage 3 to a stage 4.  His melanoma has mets to his liver.  There are options, but they are few.  I struggle to keep hope alive, but I must.  We meet again with his oncologist next week to see what the next course of action is.  He will *hopefully* be meeting with a melanoma specialist in Madison. I hope this doctor can help him.  I hope he can keep Jeff around for a very long time.  As for me, I am tired.  Down right exhausted.  I have been living in constant fear and worry.  I have a lot to lose.

One of the things that brings Jeff joy is fetching my CSA boxes every Thursday.  He has really changed his eating habits and has grown to love the produce I get from Highcross Farm as much as I do.  When Jeff is happy, I am happy.  Farmer Steve and Kath have no idea how much joy they bring my family in what they do. For that I am eternally grateful.

With that being said…

In the box this week:

  • Tomatoes
  • Carrots
  • Red chili pepper
  • I am in love with the baby watermelon
  • Savory
  • Red potatoes
  • Red Pac Choi
  • Squash

Posted by on September 29, 2011 in Uncategorized



CSA Scramble

I’m really starting to get into this concept they call breakfast.  I love the alone time I get when I cook breakfast. No phones, no kid’s friends in and out, no noise period. I love it.  I use this time to meditate, introspect and yes, pray.  There is a lot on my plate right now (excuse the pun hehe) and cooking has been soothing my soul.

This morning I decided to clean out the refrigerator.  I had some left over Canadian bacon, some left over potatoes that were in my prior week’s CSA box, some mozzarella cheese, and 2 lonely tortillas.  Add in some farm fresh eggs, onions and peppers from my awesome CSA box and Jeff and I had one heck of a yummy breakfast.

It’s a little difficult to put measurements to this recipe since I used up what I had for left overs, but I’ll do my best.


  • 4 eggs
  • 2 slices mozzarella cheese, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 slices Canadian bacon, diced
  • 10 small red potatoes, precooked and cut in half
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • S & P to taste
  • 2 tortillas

In a large skillet sautee peppers and onion in olive oil until they just start to turn soft.  Add potatoes and Canadian bacon and cook until heated through.

Crack eggs over ham/potatoes/veg and scramble everything together.  Add cheese and toss until cheese starts to melt and eggs are cooked to your liking.  Add salt and pepper.

Place on top of a warm tortilla and enjoy!

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Posted by on September 15, 2011 in Uncategorized


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Good Morning

Welcome to my morning routine. Coffee and internet. This morning I added melon to the mix courtesy of Highcross Farm.

What’s your morning routine?

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Posted by on September 9, 2011 in Uncategorized


Simple Tomato Sauce

Tomato sauce doesn’t have to be complicated, especially when you have a busy schedule like I do.  With the freshest ingredients you can get and a bit of patience you will be rewarded with you won’t believe you did it yourself and from scratch.

Included in my CSA box were some tomatoes in various sizes and colors.  I particularly like the baby Romas.  Also in the box was some amazing Thai basil.  I decided to make a sauce to compliment the bucatini I got at Glorioso’s (the best Italian market in the state!).

This recipe is inspired by Martha Stewarts Spaghetti 101 episode.  With this recipe, everything is fresh, nothing is canned. I love this recipe for its simplicity.  I’m not stirring sauce all day (not that there is anything wrong with that. I just don’t have the time).  I can get dinner on the table at a decent time and everyone is happy.  I also love how versatile this sauce recipe is.  You can adjust any of the ingredients to your liking. My family loves it when I amp up the garlic and red pepper flakes.

If you are pressed for time and craving a pasta dish.  Try this one out.


  • Fresh tomatoes (I had 4 regular sized and 7 baby romas), pureed (more on that below)
  • 5 garlic gloves, chopped
  • 1 handful of fresh basil, chopped or thrown in whole
  • 1 teaspoon fresh oregano, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • red pepper flakes (a little goes a long way, adjust to your liking.  Start of light with a dash, you can always add more later)
  • 1/8-1/4 C good red wine (If it’s not good enough to drink, it’s not good enough to cook with)
  • S&P to taste

First thing you need to do is take your fresh tomatoes and turn them into a puree.  I prefer taking the skins off the tomatoes. You don’t have to, but it does make for a nice smooth sauce. Taking the skins off a tomato isn’t as daunting as it sounds; in fact it’s pretty simple and quick.  Take a paring knife and cut an X on the bottom of each tomato.

Place your tomatoes into a pot of boiling water.  You only need to keep them in the water for a minute at most.  When you pinch (very carefully they are HOT)  the tomato and the skins slide, take them out of the water and put into a colander to cool down to where you can handle them freely.  The skins will slide ride off.  Easy!

Place skinned tomatoes into a food processor, food mill, blender whathaveyou.  Puree.  You can do a smooth puree or you can leave it a bit chunky. Your choice.

In a large sautee pan, sautee onions until translucent. Add garlic and sautee until the garlic is soft.

Add red pepper flakes, tomato puree and red wine to onions and garlic.  Stir until thoroughly mixed, simmering on medium heat.   Now is a good time to season with salt and pepper.  This is the stage when I determine if I need to add more red pepper flake or not.

Add the oregano and basil and let the sauce simmer on medium-low heat. It will start to thicken up (but not much) and look and smell amazing.

This sauce won’t be a thick sauce like you get in a can or jar. It will be on the thin side and will coat pasta nicely.   If you aren’t comfortable with a thinner pasta sauce, you could use a tablespoon of tomato paste to thicken it up a bit. I personally don’t think it needs it.  Again, preference.

The taste is incredibly fresh.  You really get flavor of the tomato.  I love the kick of heat you get and all that wonderful garlic.  Sprinkle some fresh parm on top and serve with piping hot garlic bread and enjoy!




Posted by on September 8, 2011 in Uncategorized


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CSA Thursday!

I love my boyfriend. I truly do. He has been picking up my boxes for me every Thursday. How thoughtful.  He has also been unpacking my box and putting it away before I could snap a picture.  Today I made sure I unpacked the box so I could show you the awesomeness that comes from Highcross Farm.

In the box this week:

  • golden beets
  • tomatoes
  • cucumbers
  • red potatoes
  • basil
  • pole beans
  • a big, beautiful bell pepper
  • zucchini
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Posted by on September 1, 2011 in Uncategorized