It’s fall and our garden is overflowing with tomatoes. We have picked hundreds, and there are still so many more out on the vines. I have never been a huge fan of tomatoes myself. I tend to only like them when they are cooked in a sauce or pasta dish.
I decided to try to use up some of the many tomatoes and make a Bruschetta with them. I was inspired by my Aunt S’s Bruschetta that she made a few years ago when she came to visit. I couldn’t remember her recipe other then that it used tomatoes and balsamic vinegar. I searched online for a recipe, and couldn’t really find anything that I liked, so I combined three or more recipes and came up with my own version of Bruschetta.
I loved it! The recipe is pretty simple, and very easy to make. The red onion and mozzarella cheese make this Bruschetta incredibly delicious. I will be making this again soon!
Here is my recipe
Tomato and Mozzarella Bruschetta
One loaf of your favorite crusty bread
2 large tomatoes (or 4+ smaller ones) diced
1 or 2 red onions diced
A few shakes ground black pepper
Garlic powder (to taste)
Olive oil (enough to bush all bread slices with)
2 tbsp Balsamic vinegar
Several shakes dried basil
Grated Mozzarella cheese (enough to cover tomato mixture on each slice of bread)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cut thin slices of crusty bread (I made 9). Place the slices on a cookie sheet. Brush each piece of bread with olive oil. Sprinkle a generous amount of garlic powder over each slice of bread. In a medium sized bowl add the: diced tomatoes, onions, balsamic vinegar, basil, black pepper, and a few shakes garlic powder. Mix well. Spoon evenly over bread slices. Top with grated mozzarella cheese. Bake for about 5 minutes at 350 degrees F in the preheated oven. Then broil for 3-5 minutes to get a slightly golden crunchy Bruschetta. Serve warm.
It may not be fall according to the calendar yet, but in Nanaimo fall is already here. The apples on our huge apple tree have been coming down in buckets since Mid August.
Since we have so many apples I thought it was about time to begin the fall apple baking.
To get things started I made an apple pie. I hadn’t made an apple pie in years, so wanted to find a recipe that appealed to me. I searched online, but found nothing that I liked, so I came up with my own recipe.
My pie turned out to be amazing! The crust was perfectly flakey, and the pie was everything an apple pie should be and more. It had the perfect level of sweetness to it. The brandy extract that I used was my secret ingredient that took my pie to a whole new level of yummyness. The pie was eaten up quickly, so I will defiantly be making another one soon!
Crust (makes 2 crusts)
2 cups all purpose flour
2 tbsp sugar
¼-½ tsp salt
6 tbsp margarine
½ cup skim milk
2 tsp white vinagar
About 3 cups of apple peeled and diced
2 tbsp flour
2/3 cup white sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
2 tbsp butter
1 tbsp brandy extract or brandy
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease pie plate
To make the crust: In a large bowl add the: flour, salt, and sugar, and mix well. Cut in the margarine. Add the vinegar and milk, and knead the dough into a ball. Divide the dough in half and using a rolling pin roll each ball into a round pie shaped circle. Place one rolled out crust onto prepared pie plate. Set the top crust aside. In a large bowl add the: apples, 2 tbsp flour, white sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg. Stir to coat. Now add the butter (softened), the brandy, and vanilla extract. Stir to coat. Pour the apple mixture into the pie crust in the pie plate evenly. Cover with remaining pie crust dough. Seal the top. Cut a pattern into the top of the pie with a knife (I just used random knife cuts). Bake for about 45 minutes in the preheated oven, or until lightly golden on top. Serve warm with vanilla frozen yogurt. Enjoy.
Cauliflower is one of those vegetables that I tend to only like served raw with dip, or in some form of soup. Since we have had a whole head of cauliflower in the fridge for over a week, I decided it was time to make something with it. I found a recipe for a cauliflower soup online at allrecipes.com that seemed like it would be really good, so I gave it a try. I altered the recipe quite a bit.
My cauliflower soup turned out very well. It makes about 5 large servings. It’s a simple soup, that delights the taste buds.
Here is the recipe.
Cauliflower, Ham and Cheddar Soup (inspired by allrecipes)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 chopped onion (I used red onion)
2 vegetable bullion cubes prepared according to package (I added 4 cups of water for 2 cubes)
3 more cups water
4 cups chopped cauliflower
1 cup cooked ham chopped
4 medium potatoes diced
1 ½ cup low fat cheddar cheese grated
1 ½ tbsp dried parsley
1 garlic clove diced
In a large pot heat the olive oil. Add the onion and diced garlic clove. Brown. Add the diced potato and cauliflower. Season with salt, black pepper, and garlic powder to taste. Continue to cook about 10-15 minutes. Add the prepared vegetable bullion cubes (I used 4 cups water to prepare them, and 3 additional cups in the soup for a total of 7 cups of water). Add addition garlic powder, and black pepper, and cook for 1-2 hours. Pour half of the soup into a blander and puree. Pour the pureed soup back into the pot and continue to cook. Add the chopped ham and parsley. Cook for another 20-30 minutes. Remove from heat. Add the grated cheddar cheese. Stir until the cheese has melted into the soup. Serve immediately.