Tag Archives: tomatoes

Corn-and-Black Bean Salsa

Got a last minute invite to watch the Superbowl somewhere and don’t want to show up empty handed? Well, I’ve got a really quick, hearty and tasty salsa that can be made in a few minutes with only a few ingredients. If you are someone like me who generally has canned food stocked away, this Corn-and-Black Bean Salsa will be a lifesaver when you need a quick dish or have a last minute guest to feed.

Canned corn and black beans are mixed with canned tomatoes (flavored with lime and cilantro), scallions, cumin, olive oil, and lime juice. This chunky salsa is fantastic with chips as a snack or as an addition to some chicken or in a healthy salad. And because everything goes in one bowl and can be made quickly, there is little time needed to throw this together and very little clean up. Sure, everyone can go to the store and buy some tomato-based salsa (“from New York City?!”) but you know this salsa is so much better.

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Combine all ingredients in a bowl.

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Cover and chill.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Coastal Living magazine

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Slow-Cooker Black Bean and Zucchini Chili

As I’m sure you’ve heard, we are supposed to get a little bit of snow here in the Northeast. I’m not someone who panics and runs to the grocery store when a storm is coming (although maybe I should) but I did happen to pick up a few things anyway. I did a lot of cooking this weekend so I have plenty of food to get me by (assuming I don’t lose power). After a quick trip to the produce stand on Saturday, I decided to use some extra zucchini for this Slow-Cooker Black Bean and Zucchini Chili. Warm and hearty, this chili will hopefully keep me warm while it snows.

Ground turkey (the recipe calls for beef), zucchini, black beans, onion, fire-roasted tomatoes and seasonings are combined in a slow-cooker where the meat melts into the sauce. Because I used ground turkey, I only cooked this chili for about 3 1/2 hours on high and it turned out perfect. The fire-roasted tomatoes given this chili so much flavor while the zucchini and beans help make it hearty. I’m really happy to nosh on this over the next few days. Now I just have to pray that I don’t lose power. Cold chili just isn’t the same.

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In a 4- to 6-quart slow cooker, combine the meat, tomatoes, beans, zucchini, onions, tomato paste, garlic, chili powder, oregano, 1½ teaspoons salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper.

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Cover and cook until the vegetables are tender and the meat is cooked through, on low for 7 to 8 hours or on high for 4 to 5 hours (this will shorten total recipe time).

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Serve the remaining chili with the sour cream, avocado, and cilantro.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Real Simple magazine

Grilled Tomato, Smoked Turkey, and Muenster Sandwiches

I was talking with my friend the other day about how the best food to eat at a diner at 3am is a grilled cheese with tomato and French fries. I haven’t actually had such food in a really long time because I haven’t been to a diner, let alone at 3am, since I don’t know when. And that scenario at that time of night is the only time I will let myself eat such food. Since that conversation, I’ve had grilled cheese and tomato on the brain. It’s no wonder I found myself dying to make these Grilled Tomato, Smoked Turkey, and Muenster Sandwiches.

Slices of sourdough bread are smothered in a sour cream/Dijon mustard sauce, topped with turkey, tomato, and Muenster cheese before being buttered and browned until perfectly crunchy and oozing. This sandwich didn’t stand a chance with me. Fresh tomato with gooey cheese and yummy turkey? Sold! If only I had some French fries. And I was in a diner. And it was 3am.

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Combine red onion, sour cream, Dijon mustard, and thyme in a bowl. Spread 1 teaspoon butter on one side of each bread slice.

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Spread 2 tablespoons mustard mixture over unbuttered side of each of 2 bread slices; top each with 3 turkey slices, 2 tomato slices, 1 cheese slice, and 1 bread slice (with buttered side out).

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Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Add the sandwiches; cover and cook for 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown.

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Additions: None

Omissions:

  • Red onion

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

Caprese Sliders

Yes, I know, caprese tends to be a little more July than December. After all, tomatoes are a little redder, a little plumper, and a little juicier in the summer. But if I only ate caprese during warm months, I think I’d die. Okay, so I’m dramatic. But I could easily eat it in some way every single day. Even if the tomatoes aren’t in season, caprese can still be good because fresh mozzarella and basil are always available. And if you add a little bit of balsamic vinegar or pesto, it can help you forget that tomatoes aren’t at their best. I needed a caprese fix now so that’s why I made these Caprese Sliders.

Slices of tomato are grilled on the stove (although I didn’t actually grill them) before being layered with avocado, basil, and fresh mozzarella onto warm, doughy rolls smeared with vibrant bold pesto. Really, you don’t need to grill or warm the tomatoes but if the tomatoes aren’t so great, what’s it hurt? In season, I would stick to raw tomatoes but since it’s not, warming them actually makes them a little juicier so I didn’t mind. These sandwiches didn’t stand a chance with me. So what if they fell apart a little bit? Scooping up pieces of a really good sandwich and having juices dripping down your wrists is a sign of a good sandwich. And this is a really good sandwich!

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Heat oven to 400 degrees . Place rolls on a baking sheet and bake 10 to 12 minutes, following package directions. Allow to cool. Heat stovetop grill to medium-high. Brush tomato slices with olive oil and grill 2 minutes. Turn and grill 1 additional minute.

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Split rolls horizontally and spread bottom half of each with 1 tsp pesto. Layer each with 1 tomato slice, 2 basil leaves, 1 mozzarella slice and 2 avocado slices. Top with remaining roll halves.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Family Circle magazine

Chicken Bites with Tomato Mint Salsa

I was in Atlanta last week for work and every time I travel, I look forward to getting home and cooking. I know several people who just don’t understand that but it’s something that puts me at ease. Also, after eating restaurant food for five days, I just want to eat something that I cooked. Anyone else like that? So, of course, I decided to make chicken. You know, something (not so) new and different. Boring chicken these Chicken Bites with Tomato Mint Salsa aren’t. I’m wowed.

Tomatoes, onion, and jalapeño are broiled in the oven giving them a deep rich, sweetness and then whirled together with chipotles in adobo sauce, cumin and fresh mint and cilantro. The chicken is seasoned with cilantro and cumin giving it a warm, comforting flavor that mixes so well with the bold salsa. This salsa though…my gosh. Even if you don’t want to make the chicken, make this salsa. It’s bold, it’s vivid, and it’s alive. It makes the salsa from my hotel happy hour last week look like sad, pathetic, lame, boring nothingness.

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Preheat broiler with a rack set about 4 in. from heat. Set tomatoes, onion, and jalapeño on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Broil, turning as needed, until blackened, 15 to 25 minutes; as done, transfer to a bowl and let cool.

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Peel, stem, and seed chile. In a food processor, pulse vegetables (including blackened parts from tomatoes and onion) and their juices until chopped. Add remaining salsa ingredients and pulse until finely chopped. Transfer to a bowl.

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Cut chicken into 1- to 1 1/2-in. chunks. In a bowl, combine 2 tbsp. oil, the cumin, salt, chopped cilantro, and chicken.

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Heat a 12-in. frying pan (not nonstick) over high heat. Add remaining 1 tbsp. oil; swirl to coat. Cook chicken, stirring and turning once, until lightly browned but still moist, 5 minutes.

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Stir cilantro leaves into chicken; transfer with a slotted spoon to a platter. Serve with salsa and skewers.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Sunset magazine

Asparagus with Tomato and Feta

Here we go again with Thanksgiving. Where does the time go? Well, hopefully you’ve got some fun and happy plans. Me? I’ll be keeping it small but my day is planned: coffee, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, eat a little food, watch football, eat a little more food. Oh and drink bourbon or wine somewhere in between, depending on how I feel. Well, I struggle with vegetables sometimes and rather than steamed broccoli or boring green beans or roasted Brussels sprouts, how about something untraditional like this Asparagus with Tomato and Feta instead?

Grape tomatoes and asparagus are roasted in the oven and topped with white balsamic vinegar and feta cheese, adding tons of flavor and color to these healthy spears. Sure, this dish may look a little more like Christmas than Thanksgiving but so what? ‘Tis the season, right? Whatever veggie you dish up with your turkey tomorrow, I certainly home you enjoy it, eat a bunch, pop a button on your pants, and appreciate every second of it. Be thankful, because I’m thankful for each one of you.

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Preheat oven to 425°F. Place tomatoes and olive oil on a jelly-roll pan; toss. Bake at 425°F for 4 minutes.

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Add asparagus; bake 9 minutes.

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Top with vinegar, salt, pepper, and crumbled feta cheese.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

Smoky Weeknight Chili

I was shocked the other day when I was driving around and noticed how few leaves are on the trees already. Didn’t summer just end? Did I miss the full color of bright yellow, red, and orange leaves that I’m typically in awe over every single Autumn? It’s only the middle of October! And, I might add, it’s going to be 80 degrees in Philadelphia today! Where are my leaves? I shake my head thinking about how quickly Christmas will be here, which means winter, which means cold, which means…sad face. I love Fall, and all that comes with it: bright leaves, football, pumpkin beer, and warm chili. I may not be able to do anything about the leaves but I can certainly make some chili. This Smoky Weeknight Chili is perfect for the busy person who doesn’t have time to hang out in the kitchen before dinner.

With two different kinds of beans and no meat, this vegetarian chili gets thick tomato flavor from tomato sauce, smokiness from fire-roasted tomatoes, and a warm, surprising undertone from cocoa powder. Don’t worry, there is nothing sweet about this chili which is hearty and fulfilling, even though it’s vegetarian. Sure you can add meat if you’d like but there is no need. The white beans are creamy, the chickpeas are chewy and the onion and peppers round everything out. This is a perfectly quick meal for the middle of the week in the middle of month like today.

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In a large saucepan heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add sweet pepper and onion; cook and stir for 4 to 5 minutes or until tender.

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Add beans and chili powder; cook and stir 2 minutes.

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Stir in tomato sauce, undrained tomatoes, brown sugar, and cocoa powder. Bring to boiling; reduce heat.

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Cover and simmer 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

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Top with sour cream, green onions, and additional chili powder, if desired.

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Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions:

  • Cannellini beans

Overall Rating: Like It

Source: Better Homes & Gardens magazine

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