DDD #113 – Vegan Heirloom Tomato Tart (Pie) with Homemade Buttery Crust

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2018

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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Click the image above to watch the video.

I keep throwing softballs like this out there to you kids.  Softballs in that the recipe is easy & the result delicious.  When, oh when, will you trust me & try one?

This one is almost like a quiche but uses no eggs or heavy cream – and it is vegan!  I used three colors of heirloom tomatoes but any tomatoes would work, even cherry tomatoes, I suspect.

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For the pastry crust

makes two tarts

INGREDIENTS

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

16 TBS ice cold (even frozen) vegan butter

1/4 cup or more of ice water

Heirloom Tomato Pie with Arugula, Tofu, Cream Cheese & Parmesan

makes two tarts

INGREDIENTS

Pie crust – uncooked

5-6 heirloom (or other) tomatoes – sliced thin

2 cups fresh arugula

2 cloves garlic

1 (14 oz) block firm tofu

4 oz vegan cream cheese

2 slices of your favorite flavor vegan cheese

1/4 cup vegan Parmesan – grated  (plus a bit extra for topping – optional)

S&P

Basil – as garnish

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DIRECTIONS

For the pastry crust

Put the flour, salt & sugar in a food processor.  Pulse to blend.  Then, 1 TBS at a time, pulse in the cold butter until it is all incorporated.  Add a few TBS water & pulse until little balls of dough begin to form & it falls away from the bowl of the processor.

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Remove from the bowl & press into two balls – one a tad larger than the other.  Press flat, wrap in plastic wrap & chill for about an hour.  Let it sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes before you roll it out.

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DIRECTIONS

for the Heirloom Tomato Pie with Arugula, Tofu, Cream Cheese & Parmesan

Heat the oven to 400 degrees.

Press the dough into a greased pie or tart pan.  A traditional pie dish is absolutely OK to use – as is a spring form pan.  Slit the crust at the bottom and par-bake it for 7 minutes.

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Put the sliced tomatoes on paper towels, salt them & press more paper towels on top.  If your tomatoes are very wet & seedy, squeeze some of the seeds out to avoid excess moisture in the pie.  You can see that I did this with my red tomatoes.

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Meanwhile, blend the tofu, cream cheese, cheese slices, vegan Parmesan, arugula & garlic in a blender or food processor.  Season with S&P.

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When the crust has baked 7 minutes, top with the cup of grated Parmesan, the tofu mix & the drained tomatoes.  Add some S&P.  Maybe sprinkle some grated vegan Parmesan on top.  Drizzle a bit of olive oil on top.

Bake for 45-60 minutes – or until the ricotta is set.  You might need to wrap the edges of your pie with foil (or one of these cool silicone things – the red thing below – that I got at Bed Bath & Beyond) to prevent the crust from over-browning.

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When the center seems set, allow this to cool for at least 15 minutes before cutting into it.  It can be eaten warm or room temperature.

Garnish with basil & eat it up!

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DDD #93 – Vegan Grated Heirloom Tomato Pasta Sauce

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2018

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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Click the image of me below to watch the sauce recipe WITHOUT the mushroom.  These images here reflect the use of a crazy lobster mushroom I bought when I originally made this recipe.  You need not use the mushroom – in fact – I rather suggest against it because it was very expensive and underwhelming but I include it here, anyway, for the curious & the risk takers.

I went to the farmer’s market for the first time in forever.  Once there, I was reminded of why I no longer go.  IT COSTS A FORTUNE.  Everything seems reasonable until you walk out with fingers screaming from the pain of carrying 400 pounds of produce & $200 poorer.  But it is always fun & there are usually yummy things to sample.  This time there were almond croissants the size of footballs, boxes of mixed mushrooms for $20, some peana & eggphan (I can’t resist misspelled signs).

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There were also golden beets that were larger than a softball and the crazy-looking thing above.  That, my friends, is a lobster mushroom.  It was about the size of a small Russet potato & weighed about 4 ounces.  I asked the mushroom monger what it was & she told me it was a lobster mushroom.  I asked why they were called that & was told that they not only have a reddish color similar to a cooked lobster but also that they have a slight seafood taste.  I had to have one!  I let her pick one out and as she weighed it, I began pulling out ones to pay for it.  I pulled for a while because that fucker there cost me $17!!!  I almost choked at the price but decided it would be a worthy blog post so I paid & walked away – wondering what the fuck I was gonna do with it.

Intimidated by the idea of ruining a $17 mushroom barely larger than my fist, I Googled to see what others had done with them.  I found this gorgeous photo & checked out the recipe at THE COFFEE TABLE COOKBOOK.

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I had the bulk of the ingredients already so I decided to make a vegan version of their FETTUCCINI WITH LOBSTER MUSHROOM AND SCRATCH-MADE HEIRLOOM TOMATO SAUCE.  I simplified the sauce recipe quite a bit but the most interesting thing I learned from their post was the concept of grating tomatoes.  Click that link & see how it is done & how not to grate your flesh into the sauce.  You basically grate the tomatoes on a box grater & it results in a beautiful tomato puree without any skin.  See below.

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I added a lot of crushed red pepper to my sauce which might have been a mistake because the spicy sauce sort of overwhelmed the very delicately flavored lobster mushroom.  The mushroom had only the slightest mushroom flavor & no seafood element at all.   Those photos above are the mushroom cut up.  Looks like chicken or pork – or bread.  It is very light & porous so it reduced to almost nothing in the saute pan.  Overall – I would say there is no reason to pay so much for what amounts to so little.  Regular mushrooms are just as good and far less costly.

I do recommend trying this sauce, however.  I eliminated the dairy from the original recipe & also could not bring myself to add a cup of the precious – a cup of white wine – to the sauce just to cook it off.  I felt the wine would be better used poured down my gullet & I don’t think the sauce suffered and I know I didn’t.

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Vegan Pasta with Heirloom Tomato Sauce & Lobster Mushroom

Serves 2

INGREDIENTS

1/2 lb pasta

for the sauce

5 large heirloom tomatoes – grated (see here)

1 TBS olive oil

2 garlic cloves – chopped

1/2 tsp to 1 TBS crushed red pepper – to taste

10 basil leaves (plus more for garnish)

several sprigs of fresh thyme

S&P

IF USING  – for the mushroom

4 oz lobster mushroom (or 1/2 lb regular mushrooms)

2 TBS olive oil or vegan butter

3 garlic cloves – chopped

1 tsp thyme leaves

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DIRECTIONS

for the sauce

Heat the olive oil & add the garlic.  Saute one minutes & then add the other ingredients.  Simmer on med-high until it reduces by about half.  Season to taste.  Remove the thyme sprigs and throw them away.

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for the mushrooms

Heat the olive oil or vegan butter and saute the mushrooms until they are nearly done to your liking.  Add the garlic & thyme & cook another minute or two.  Be sure not to burn the garlic.  Season with S&P.

Cook the pasta as directed & toss with the sauce.  Serve & top with mushrooms & chopped fresh basil.

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DDD Ep. #6 – Vegan Roast Beef (Steak) with Sauteed Onions & Mushrooms & Roasted Heirloom Carrots

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2017

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

~

As you may or may not know – I started a Youtube channel last month.  I have almost twenty recipes posted there on:

Click HERE to go to the channel & check it out.

The roast beef you see here is my latest endeavor.  Here is the video.


Vegan Roast Beef (Steak) with Sauteed Onions & Mushrooms & Roasted Heirloom Carrots

INGREDIENTS

2 1/2 cups vital wheat gluten (or just enough to get a proper dough texture)

1 TBS caraway seeds (ground in a mill or with a mortar & pestle)

1 TBS fennel seeds (ground in a mill or with a mortar & pestle)

2 TBS freeze-dried shallots or granulated onions (or minced raw shallots)

1 TBS paprika

S&P to taste (go LIGHT with the salt)

1 cup vegetable stock

1/2 cup olive oil

2 TBS vinegar (red, white, balsamic – your call)

2 TBS molasses

1 cooked beet pureed with 1/2 cup veggie stock

A dry rub of your choice (or simply a blend of dry herbs)

Bottled marinade of your choice mixed with equal part water OR veggie stock with a few bay leaves

Cheesecloth & kitchen twine

1 onion – sliced

2 TBS brown sugar

8 oz mushrooms – sliced

1 bunch heirloom carrots

Additional olive oil

DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 425

Whisk the first 6 (dry) ingredients together in a bowl.  In another bowl, whisk the stock, oil, vinegar, molasses & pureed beet.  Blend the wet & dry ingredients – adding vital wheat gluten or more stock until you have a ground beef texture.

Roll in your dry rub & wrap tightly in cheesecloth – tying off the ends.

Bring your marinade to  boil, reduce to a simmer & add the beef to it.  Simmer for an hour – turning once in the middle.  Be careful you do not boil your marinade away.  Add water or stock – if you need to.

Heat olive oil in a pan.  Remove the cheesecloth & pan sear the beef on both sides.  Set aside.  You can slice this thinly & make sandwiches or – go for the steak option.

In the same pan, heat some butter or olive oil & saute the onions until soft.  Add 2 TBS brown sugar & saute until the onions become golden.  Add the mushrooms & saute until they are done to your taste.  Season with S&P.

If you are doing “steaks,” cut them & sear them on both sides in the mushroom pan.

Toss the carrots in olive oil and S&P & roast 10-15 minutes (or until they begin to turn golden) – turning them once in the middle.

Serve!

Vegan Fried Tofu Tacos with Purple Cabbage & Heirloom Carrot Slaw

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2016

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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Tacos are kind of like pizza in that they are endlessly customizable & virtually everyone loves them.  I have no great revelation here except that it is kind of hard to pan fry breaded tofu & have it look pretty but who cares?  These are TACOS & nobody cares what they look like – only what they taste like.  And these were very tasty.  Because the tofu was fried & I added avocado – I wanted to keep the rest pretty light – so I added no cheese or cream sauce but you certainly could. I made a very simple slaw with very little vegan mayo in it & it worked great because it added color & crunch but not much in the way of calories.  If calories don’t concern you, you could make the slaw with a creamier dressing, add more mayo or even use a different dressing altogether  – like an Asian miso salad dressing or something.  As I said – tacos are endlessly customizable so make these to suit yourself.  One pound of tofu will likely fry up to make enough filling for 6-10 tacos – depending on the size of your tortillas & your appetites.  Like with pizza – I am just making suggestions here as to ingredients but you can add ones you want, lose ones you hate, and fill them as densely or sparingly as you please.  They are tacos – almost impossible to fuck up.

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Purple Cabbage & Heirloom Carrot Slaw

Makes enough slaw for 6-10 tacos

INGREDIENTS

1/4 large head purple cabbage – chopped or grated (I used the grating blade in my food processor)

5 heirloom (or regular) carrots – grated (I used the grating blade in my food processor)

5 scallions – sliced finely

1 small bunch cilantro – chopped

1/4 tsp cumin

1/4 cup vegan mayo

S&P

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DIRECTIONS

Mix everything up & season with S&P.  Add more mayo if you like a wetter slaw

Set aside.

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Vegan Fried Tofu Tacos

makes 6-10 tacos (as far as tofu goes – the other ingredient ratios are up to you)

1 lb extra firm tofu – cubed

Corn tortillas

Avocado – sliced

Tomato – diced

Cilantro

1 TBS sriracha

1 TBS agave nectar

1/2 cup corn meal

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp chili powder

S&P

1/4 cup olive oil

Potential garnish:  grated cheese, sour cream, diced onion, corn, black beans, cilantro, jalapenos, lime wedges

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DIRECTIONS

Toss the cubed tofu in the sriracha & agave.  In a large bowl, mix the corn meal with the cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder & some S&P.  Toss the tofu in the corn meal until it is well covered.

Heat the olive oil in a pan large enough to hold all the tofu – or do it in shifts.  If the tofu is too crowded – it might start breaking up.  Fry – carefully tuning once in a while – until it is all browned.  Never fear if some breading falls off.  You are gonna drop lots of goodies on top of the tofu so pretty is not important.

I like to warm my corn tortillas over the burners of my stove until they get some char marks.  You can do this – or not – but I recommend it.

Assemble your tacos! Layer some slaw, then tofu, tomato, avocado & cilantro and/or whatever toppings you have chosen.  Shove them in  your face.  Swill a beer.  Eat more tacos.  Have no regrets!

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Roasted Rosemary Potatoes & Heirloom Carrots and a 90210 U4EA Podcast!!

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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So – I did a live-on-stage podcast about the 90210 episode U4EA.  It was really fun & I think it is pretty funny.  If you are unfamiliar with the episode – you can watch it here: (http://www.hulu.com/watch/802321#i0,p9,s2,d0) OR YOUTUBE (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3AOH8HLFLw).

And HERE is a link to the actual podcast.   It is on i-tunes, too.

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These are not anything new but they really are delicious.  I used some leftover red onion that I had from my Easy Vegan Meatloaf – seen above.  I do not recommend that you do this as it just burned into charred blackness.  These come out crispy on the outside & creamy on the inside & are quite irresistible.  You will likely burn your mouth as you impatiently shove them in your face straight from the oven.

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Roasted Rosemary Potatoes & Heirloom Carrots

Serves 2 very well as a side

INGREDIENTS

5-6 red potatoes – cut into bite-sized pieces

5-6 heirloom (or regular) carrots – cut into bite-sized pieces

2 TBS fresh rosemary – chopped

olive oil

S&P

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 425 degrees.

Toss the potatoes & carrots with a drizzle of olive & the rosemary and S&P.  Be sure everything is evenly coated.  Roast – turning every 15 minutes – for about 45-60 minutes – or until the potatoes are golden & crispy.

Serve!

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Heirloom Tomato, Fresh Mozzarella & Avocado Caprese Salad with Olive Oil Caviar

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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So – I saw THIS post from The Skinny Fork on Pinterest & was intrigued by the olive oil caviar.  I promptly Googled it & about $75 later – I had 4 little jars of the stuff in different flavors.   I bought it HERE.

This is what they say about it at Gordon-Gourmet.com:

“About Caviaroli ®

DSC_0184Caviaroli is fine Spanish olive oil that is encapsulated to mimic the delicate refinement of caviar.  The concept transpired back in 2008 when Ferrán Adrià created this innovative product and produced it in small quantities, inspiring others to take part in this surprising enterprise.  Pere Castells, technical director of Fundació Alicia, introduced olive oil caviar to the Caviaroli team and helped begin research on production.  For two years, the team worked enjoyably at mastering the technology which initially was a challenge.  Finally, the first olive oil caviar was created outside of El Bulli’s kitchen, and soon it was presented to Ferràn Adrià, who promptly ordered 10kg in less than a week.  Adrià considered this new caviar good enough to be served at El Bulli, the restaurant where he worked as head chef.  He even presented the product in a lecture at Harvard, saying that “soon the olive oil caviar will be available,” and in jest added, “…but it can only be done with Spanish olive oil”, encouraging the use of quality grade Spanish products.

In  2011 at the Australian Fine Food’s Show, Caviaroli won “Best new Foodservice product award”, and in 2012 the production plant in Spain was registered and Caviaroli was approved by the FDA.  Stored in a sleek glass bottle, the Caviar will stay fresh for up to twelve months–the same as regular bottled olive oil.”

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There it it!  Cool looking, no?  I used a basil flavored one.  I did not add the traditional basil to my dish here because I knew fresh basil would overpower the caviar & I wanted to experience it.  (I also think balsamic vinegar overpowers caprese salads & never add it.)  The olive oil caviar tastes strongly of olive oil – the basil flavor is barely a tiny hint.

If you do not want to invest in something like this caviar – just drizzle olive oil & add some fresh chopped basil to your caprese.   By the way – caprese is pronounced like this:

It is “ca-pray’-zay.”  Not “ca-preece.”

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This is as easy as cutting stuff up.  Use as much of each ingredient as suits your tastes & the number of mouths you are feeding.

Heirloom Tomato, Fresh Mozzarella & Avocado Caprese Salad with Olive Oil Caviar

INGREDIENTS

Heirloom or regular tomatoes – sliced

Fresh mozzarella – sliced

Avocado – sliced or cubed

Olive oil caviar – or regular olive oil

Fresh basil (optional but traditional) – sliced – or even a thin drizzle of basil pesto

S&P to taste

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DIRECTIONS

Assemble & serve.

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Vegan Pasta with Heirloom Tomato Sauce & Lobster Mushroom

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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So – I went to the farmer’s market for the first time in forever.  Once there, I was reminded of why I no longer go.  IT COSTS A FORTUNE.  Everything seems reasonable until you walk out with fingers screaming from the pain of carrying 400 pounds of produce & $200 poorer.  But it is always fun & there are usually yummy things to sample.  This time there were almond croissants the size of footballs, boxes of mixed mushrooms for $20, some peana & eggphan (I can’t resist misspelled signs).

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There were also golden beets that were larger than a softball and the crazy-looking thing above.  That, my friends, is a lobster mushroom.  It was about the size of a small Russet potato & weighed about 4 ounces.  I asked the mushroom monger what it was & she told me it was a lobster mushroom.  I asked why they were called that & was told that they not only have a reddish color similar to a cooked lobster but also that they have a slight seafood taste.  I had to have one!  I let her pick one out and as she weighed it, I began pulling out ones to pay for it.  I pulled for a while because that fucker there cost me $17!!!  I almost choked at the price but decided it would be a worthy blog post so I paid & walked away – wondering what the fuck I was gonna do with it.

Intimidated by the idea of ruining a $17 mushroom barely larger than my fist, I Googled to see what others had done with them.  I found this gorgeous photo & checked out the recipe at THE COFFEE TABLE COOKBOOK.

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I had the bulk of the ingredients already so I decided to make a vegan version of their FETTUCCINI WITH LOBSTER MUSHROOM AND SCRATCH-MADE HEIRLOOM TOMATO SAUCE.  I simplified the sauce recipe quite a bit but the most interesting thing I learned from their post was the concept of grating tomatoes.  Click that link & see how it is done & how not to grate your flesh into the sauce.  You basically grate the tomatoes on a box grater & it results in a beautiful tomato puree without any skin.  See below.

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I added a lot of crushed red pepper to my sauce which might have been a mistake because the spicy sauce sort of overwhelmed the very delicately flavored lobster mushroom.  The mushroom had only the slightest mushroom flavor & no seafood element at all.   Those photos above are the mushroom cut up.  Looks like chicken or pork – or bread.  It is very light & porous so it reduced to almost nothing in the saute pan.  Overall – I would say there is no reason to pay so much for what amounts to so little.  Regular mushrooms are just as good and far less costly.

I do recommend trying this sauce, however.  I eliminated the dairy from the original recipe & also could not bring myself to add a cup of the precious – a cup of white wine – to the sauce just to cook it off.  I felt the wine would be better used poured down my gullet & I don’t think the sauce suffered and I know I didn’t.

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Vegan Pasta with Heirloom Tomato Sauce & Lobster Mushroom

Serves 2

INGREDIENTS

1/2 lb pasta

for the sauce

5 large heirloom tomatoes – grated (see here)

1 TBS olive oil

2 garlic cloves – chopped

1/2 tsp to 1 TBS crushed red pepper – to taste

10 basil leaves (plus more for garnish)

several sprigs of fresh thyme

S&P

for the mushroom

4 oz lobster mushroom (or 1/2 lb regular mushrooms)

2 TBS olive oil or vegan butter

3 garlic cloves – chopped

1 tsp thyme leaves

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DIRECTIONS

for the sauce

Heat the olive oil & add the garlic.  Saute one minutes & then add the other ingredients.  Simmer on med-high until it reduces by about half.  Season to taste.  Remove the thyme sprigs and throw them away.

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for the mushrooms

Heat the olive oil or vegan butter and saute the mushrooms until they are nearly done to your liking.  Add the garlic & thyme & cook another minute or two.  Be sure not to burn the garlic.  Season with S&P.

Cook the pasta as directed & toss with the sauce.  Serve & top with mushrooms & chopped fresh basil.

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Pasta alla Crudaiola with Heirloom Tomatoes and Burrata

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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This is the easiest recipe EVER!  The only cooking involved is boiling the pasta.  This is a delicious dish & can be made vegan by simply omitting the burrata – because it doesn’t really need it – but if you are a cheese lover – burrata is a creamy, decadent delight!  I used heirloom tomatoes (actually 2 heirloom & 1 regular) but any tomatoes will do.  Fresh & light & easy.  Yum!

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Pasta alla Crudaiola with Heirloom Tomatoes & Burrata

serves 2

INGREDIENTS

1/2 lb pasta (I used orrecchiette)

3 tomatoes – halved – at room temperature (never refrigerate tomatoes)

1-2 TBS olive oil

garlic to taste – minced (I used 2 cloves)

2 balls burrata (more or less – your call) – at room temperature

Basil – torn by hand (quantity – your call)

S&P

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DIRECTIONS

Halve the tomatoes & poke or squeeze the majority of the seeds out.  Dice the tomatoes.

Mince the garlic.  Put the tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, some shredded basil & S&P in a bowl & let the flavors combine – at room temperature – for an hour.

Cook your pasta.  Drain & toss with the tomatoes.  Plate it & add the burrata.  Bust into the burrata & blend for a fresh & creamy sensation!  Garnish with extra basil & lots of freshly cracked pepper.

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Arugula and Ricotta Cream Pizza with Heirloom Tomatoes and Herbs

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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Yesterday, I posted my Arugula, Ricotta, Cream Cheese and Parmesan Pie with Heirloom Tomatoes – seen above.

I found myself with a bit of extra arugula-ricotta cream & some extra tomatoes – so I made this pizza.

Because I used extra ricotta from the pie recipe – I don’t really have details on the ingredients needed for such a small amount – but I will try to approximate.

It was a lovely & mild pizza but I added tons of crushed red pepper flakes once it was cooked – as you can see below.   I added fresh basil & thyme – primarily because I had them.  Rosemary & fresh oregano would be nice, too.

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Arugula and Ricotta Cream Pizza with Heirloom Tomatoes and Herbs

INGREDIENTS

Pizza dough – I always make THIS but your favorite dough will work

Heirloom (or other) tomatoes – sliced thin, salted a bit & pressed between paper towels to reduce moisture

Fresh herbs (I used thyme & basil but rosemary and/or oregano might be nice, too)

Grated cheese (I used mozzarella)

1/2 cup fresh arugula

1 clove garlic

4 oz fresh ricotta (or vegan alternative)

1 oz cream cheese – optional (or vegan alternative)

S&P

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 450-500 degrees.

Sliced & drain the tomatoes (sprinkled with salt) between paper towels.

Puree the ricotta, arugula, garlic & cream cheese (if using) in a blender or food processor.  Season with salt & pepper.

Roll out the dough.  Place it on a cooking sheet either treated with olive oil or cooking spray of covered in parchment paper.

Top it with a thin layer of the ricotta cream, some grated cheese & then the tomatoes.  Season with S&P.

Bake for 8-12 minutes or until your crust is done & the tomatoes look a bit seared.

Garnish with fresh herbs.  Reflect on how nice it is to eat pizza made at home & NOT be at a fucking food court in a holiday-crazed mall.  Continue eating the entire pizza.

FTW!

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Arugula, Ricotta, Cream Cheese and Parmesan Pie with Heirloom Tomatoes

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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I keep throwing softballs like this out there to you kids.  Softballs in that the recipe is easy & the result delicious.  When, oh when, will you trust me & try one?

This one is almost like a quiche but uses no eggs or heavy cream.   I suppose it can be made vegan – if you can find vegan alternatives to the dairy ingredients.    I used three colors of heirloom tomatoes but any tomatoes would work, even cherry tomatoes, I suspect.  I used a packaged, raw pastry dough but you can make your own if your prefer.  HERE is a recipe for dough that I included in my Savory Three Mushroom & Kale Pie, seen just below.

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The ingredients & instructions lists are short so, if you like tomatoes & arugula & a light but creamy entree – why not give this one a try?
Arugula, Ricotta, Cream Cheese & Parmesan Heirloom Tomato Pie

INGREDIENTS

Pie crust – uncooked

3 heirloom (or other) tomatoes – sliced thin

2 cups fresh arugula

2 cloves garlic

15 oz fresh ricotta – or vegan alternative

4 oz cream cheese – or vegan alternative

S&P

1 cup Parmesan – grated  – or vegan alternative

Basil – as garnish

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 400 degrees.

Press the dough into a greased pie or tart pan.  A traditional pie dish is absolutely OK to use – as is a spring form pan.  Slit the crust at the bottom and par-bake it for 7 minutes.

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Put the sliced tomatoes on paper towels, salt them & press more paper towels on top.  If your tomatoes are very wet & seedy, squeeze some of the seeds out to avoid excess moisture in the pie.  You can see that I did this with my red tomatoes.

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Meanwhile, blend the ricotta, cream cheese, arugula & garlic in a blender or food processor.  Season with S&P.

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When the crust has baked 7 minutes, top with the cup of grated Parmesan, the ricotta mix & the drained tomatoes.  Add some S&P.

Bake for 45-60 minutes – or until the ricotta is set.  You might need to wrap the edges of your pie with foil (or one of these cool silicone things – the red thing below – that I got at Bed Bath & Beyond) to prevent the crust from over-browning.

Depending on how deep your crust and/or pan might be – it is possible that you will have leftovers of the ricotta filling.  If you do – hang onto it.  Don’t overfill the crust or you run the risk of the tomatoes slipping off while cooking.   I will post a pizza recipe tomorrow that uses the ricotta filling.

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When the center seems set, allow this to cool for at least 15 minutes before cutting into it.  It can be eaten warm or room temperature.

Garnish with basil & eat it up!

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Tomato Pie (Tart) with Not-Fried Green Heirloom Tomatoes & Spicy Remoulade (Vegetarian or Vegan)

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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OK.  This is fucking easy & light & can be vegan if you have a vegan dough recipe.  I used a Pillsbury pie crust which I just discovered has lard in it.  Oops!  I won’t make that mistake again.

Anyway – you can make your own pie crust with vegan butter or use a pre-made thing that is ACCIDENTALLY vegan – like Pillsbury Butter Flake Crescent Rolls.  Check out SO FAKE IT IS VEGAN or PETA’s ACCIDENTALLY VEGAN list for some surprising vegan items.

The fact is – if you are vegan but not on a gluten-free diet – you probably can figure out your pie crust pretty easily.  Gluten-avoiders probably have all their alternative options lined up, too, so I am not going to worry.  I am just gonna post this easy & yummy thing & let you guys work out subbing where you need to sub.

I really LOVE fried green tomatoes but good luck finding genuine green tomatoes in LA.  Yet – often when I squeeze the heirloom selection – the green ones are very hard.  Likely, they would be red ones if left on the vine long enough.  Who cares?  The hard green ones (and a resilient yellow one) worked great in this dish.  And, while it offers most of the pleasures of a fried green tomato recipe, it is not fried at all & comes with far less guilt.

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This spicy remoulade I made is basically spicy Thousand Island dressing.  Or – a tweak on the Delta Dipping Sauce I posted with my Spicy Baked Parmesan Zucchini Chips and my “Oh, shit!  I ate too big of a chunk of a pot truffle and now I need to cook my way out of an eighteen hour high” dinner (for THAT story – look here – and read the whole post) – Spicy Southern Fried Cauliflower and Delta Dipping Sauce with Smashed Baked Potatoes and White Gravy and Buffalo Mac & Cheese – seen below, respectively.

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There are a bunch of ingredients but you just blend them up & go – so don’t be intimidated.

SPICY REMOULADE

INGREDIENTS

(PS – you can go ALL mayo rather than with yogurt – if the extra calories don’t concern you or if vegan yogurt is hard to find.)

1/2 cup yogurt – or vegan alternative

1/4 cup mayo – or vegan alternative

1/8 cup grain or Dijon mustard

1-3 garlic cloves

1 tsp dill pickle juice

1 cocktail dill pickle

1 tsp capers

1/2 tsp prepared horseradish

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/4 tsp hot or smoked paprika

1 tsp hot sauce (I used Crystal)

DIRECTIONS

Blend that shit up in a food processor or blender.  Refrigerate.

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Tomato Pie (Tart) with Not-Fried Green Heirloom Tomatoes

INGREDIENTS

Pie crust for the tart shell (I used Pillsbury but I hear there is lard in them – so choose or make your crust with your own dietary restrictions in mind)

4 heirloom tomatoes (color selection not important) – mine were NOT ripe & were rock hard so look for this sort (or the hardest tomatoes you can find)  – sliced very thin

1 small sweet onion – sliced thin

2-4 garlic cloves – chopped

S&P

2 TBS butter – or vegan alternative

3/4 cup Panko or other bread crumbs

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

Basil or arugula or parsley as garnish (insanely optional)

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 400 degrees.

I used a spring form tart pan like this one (photo stolen from Google):

tart-pan

ANY spring form pan or even a traditional pie dish will do – so don’t go buying something you don’t need.

Whatever pan you use – grease it up with cooking spray or olive oil or butter.

Slice the tomatoes & lay them on paper towels.  Sprinkle with salt & press more paper towels on top.  This will remove lots of their moisture so your tart is not soggy.

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Press your crust dough into whatever pan you are using and cut some vent slits in the bottom & bake empty (par-bake) for SEVEN MINUTES.  Take it out of the oven & set aside.

After the tomatoes drain for 15 minutes or more – layer the sliced onions & garlic & tomatoes into your crust.  Add lots of S&P.

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Melt the butter in a pan and add the panko & seasonings.  Spread it on top of the tomatoes.

Wrap tightly in foil (don’t forget the foil or your panko will burn) and bake for about 45 minutes to an hour – erring on the longer oven-time if you want really soft tomatoes.  Remove the foil & bake another five minutes or until the panko turns golden.

Let this sucker rest unmolested for at least 15 minutes before cutting into it.

Serve with the spicy remoulade & any garnish you feel inspired to use.  Bust out some champagne.  It’s the holidays!   Draw a hot bubble bath & polish off the champagne in the tub – with a copy of my book!  www.bathingbook.com!  Makes a great stocking stuffer – assuming the recipients of your stuffed stockings like to read raunchy comedies about drinking too much & regrettable sex.

Cheers!

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Grilled Avocado Bruschetta with Chimichurri & Grilled Avocado, Feta Cheese & Heirloom Tomato Crostini with Basil Oil

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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Last night I tried something new.  I grilled an avocado.  The idea of a hot, squishy avocado is repellent but I have these Goddamn avocados from Costco & I needed to find creative ways to use them – ways not involving guacamole.  I only left this guy on the grill for less than a minute – just enough to get grill marks.  And the result?  This might be one of my all-time favorite flavors!!  Absolutely incredible!  I recommend you try it as soon as possible.

Now – I also had two slices left over from my first Artisan bread effort.

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I used this bread because I had it.  If making this CRAZY easy bread isn’t part of your plan, no worries.  Use slices of French bread or some other bread with a crusty crust.

As an aside – bruschetta – is pronounced “brusketta.”

I am often corrected when I say it this way – but I remain undeterred.

Crostini & bruschetta are the same thing.

You can top these toasted treats with a wide variety of things but, as of yesterday, grilled avocado tops my list.  You really have to try it.

Also – here is how you peel & pit an avocado:

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Grilled Avocado Bruschetta with Chimichurri

INGREDIENTS

Crusty read

Chimichurri Sauce

Avocado

olive oil

lime juice

S&P to taste

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 375.  Arrange bread slices on a baking sheet, brush both sides with oil, and season with salt and pepper.  Bake until golden, 15 to 20 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through – if undersides are not browning, turn bruschetta over once during baking. Let cool on baking sheets.

Halve the avocado.   Remove the pit and peel.

Mix a TBS olive oil with a TBS lime juice.  Brush this mix onto the flat side of the avocado & grill over medium heat for 30 seconds to a minute – just until the grill leaves scars.  You can spin the avocado during this period to get cross grill marks.

Remove from heat, brush all over with lime & olive oil mix & dice.

Top your bruschetta slices with avocado & drizzle with chimichurri sauce.  Serve to people & be considered a hero!

OR —–

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Grilled Avocado, Feta Cheese & Heirloom Tomato Crostini with Basil Oil

INGREDIENTS

Crusty bread

Basil oil

Avocado

feta cheese

Tomatoes – diced

S&P to taste

Olive oil

lime juice

Chopped fresh basil as garnish (optional)

DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 375.  Arrange bread slices on a baking sheet, brush both sides with oil, and season with salt and pepper.  Bake until golden, 15 to 20 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through – if undersides are not browning, turn bruschetta over once during baking. Let cool on baking sheets.

Halve the avocado.   Remove the pit and peel.

Mix a TBS olive oil with a TBS lime juice.  Brush this mix onto the flat side of the avocado & grill over medium heat for 30 seconds to a minute – just until the grill leaves scars.  You can spin the avocado during this period to get cross grill marks.

Remove from heat, brush all over with lime & olive oil mix & dice.

In a bowl, mix the grilled avocado, the feta (crumbled) and diced tomato in whatever ratio you prefer.  Equal parts – or heavy on the avocado is nice.  S&P to taste.

Top your crostini with this mix, drizzle with basil oil & top with chopped fresh basil (if using) & serve!  Run a victory lap!

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Baked Leftover Pasta with Heirloom Tomato Bisque, English Peas & Three Cheeses in Ramekins

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

As promised, another recipe made up from several other recipes posted this week.  This one uses leftover fettuccine from my Cilantro-Serrano Pasta post and leftover Tomato Bisque and some of my Homemade American Cheese.   You can use freshly cooked pasta or leftover, if you have it.   The soup can be replaced with ANY pasta sauce you prefer from a simple arrabiata to a marinara to an alfredo.  The cheese can also be substituted with goat or Parmesan or whatever you have handy.  I used English peas because I had them & I love them.

This particular effort isn’t that pretty because green noodles & a pink sauce make for an odd combination but let me tell you – it is friggin’ DELICIOUS.  I made it & just meant to taste one & stood there & inhaled an entire serving.   Really, really good!  I had intended to make little wonton baskets for each of these but forgot to – so a version using wontons is likely in my future.   At any rate – if you use a white pasta & a red sauce – or some other more compatible color combination – your effort should come out prettier.

I cooked 6 of these ramekins in a larger pan with water that came up about half way on the ramekins – and one just out there on its own in the oven.  In the future – I will blow off the whole water business because it achieved nothing that I could appreciate except maybe slowing the heating process a tad – and there is no practical purpose for that in this recipe.  So – you will see images of the larger pan & water but I am not recommending you do it that way.  The only thing it adds is a VERY real danger that you will scald yourself with the hot water as you remove these from the oven.

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Baked Leftover Pasta with Heirloom Tomato Bisque, English Peas & Three Cheeses in Ramekins

INGREDIENTS

4 cups cooked pasta

1 1/2 cups leftover bisque or other pasta sauce

1 cup fresh English peas (optional)

2 large balls fresh mozzarella – sliced

1 2″ cube homemade American cheese or other cheese of your choice

Fresh ground pepper to taste

Fresh basil and/or chopped fresh tomato – as garnish

Extra bisque or pasta sauce – as garnish

Fresh Parmesan to shave – as garnish

DIRECTIONS

Pre-heat the oven to 350.

Blend the pasta, sauce and whatever cheese(s) you are using (NOT the mozzarella) in a bowl.  Add the peas – if using.

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Spray 7 ramekins (sorry – it just worked out to 7) with cooking spray.  Divide the pasta mix among them.  Try not to over-fill them or they will get messy in the oven.  Top with a little extra bisque/sauce & put a slice of fresh mozzarella on each. Grind some pepper on them.

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Place on a cookie sheet & cover each with a sheet of foil that has been greased with cooking spray.

Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.  Remove foil & bake another ten minutes.

Remove from the oven & let cool a minute or two.  These can be served in the ramekins or flipped over & served on a plate.  Either way, garnish each with chopped tomato and/r fresh chopped basil and/or some freshly shaved Parmesan.

Devour & be proud of yourself for using up your leftovers!  Maybe even serve with some leftover Artisan bread!!!

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Vegan Roasted Heirloom Tomato Bisque

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

This soup is spicy & tastes rich & creamy despite its total lack of dairy.  It gets the rich creamy element from soaked & pureed cashews.  Ymmm!  There are a few steps required but all are simple.  Do not be intimidated.  I used lots of celery because I had it & it needed to be used.  I also used heirloom cherry tomatoes – for the same reason as the celery – but larger tomatoes are more desirable.  You can use heirloom or Roma or any variety of tomato.  My soup came out less red than your average tomato soup because not all my tomatoes were red & because I did not use tomato paste.  Also – I used a red onion because that was what I had.  Yellow or brown might be better.  Also – since spending 90 minutes caramelizing an onion might be too labor intensive for you & make you blow off this recipe entirely – know that the caramelized onion ingredient can be omitted without a huge loss in flavor.  Also – cashews can be soaked overnight rather than boiled & soaked for an hour.  Also – this soup need not be vegan.  Heavy cream added at the end is a nice touch if that appeals to you – and would make the cashews unnecessary.  I recommend trying the cashew version at least once, though.  It is a healthier option.

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Vegan Roasted Heirloom Tomato Bisque

INGREDIENTS

2.5 – 3 lbs heirloom (or other) tomatoes

10 celery stalks – chopped (VERY optional)

1 vegetarian bouillon cube (optional)

4 serrano (or jalapeno) peppers (optional)

10 garlic cloves – or to taste

1 cup raw cashews

olive oil

6 or more fresh basil leaves – chopped

1 TBS crushed red pepper flakes (or less – to taste)

1/2 tsp dry thyme

1 tsp oregano

1 large onion – quartered & slices 1/4 inch thick

2 or more TBS tomato paste (optional)

S&P to taste

GARNISH OPTIONS – more fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, grated cheese, blue cheese or goat or feta (crumbled on top), fried sage leaves, shaved Parmesan, homemade basil oil, sour cream, creme fraiche, heavy cream, croutons – whatever you like.  And LOTS of fresh cracked pepper!

DIRECTIONS

Pre-heat the oven to 350.

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In a small pan, cover the cashews with water & bring to a boil.  Remove from heat & allow to soak one hour.  Or, conversely – let them soak overnight.

Cut your tomatoes in half (or if using some cherry tomatoes, as I did, leave them whole) & toss all the tomatoes & FIVE of your garlic cloves & serrano or jalapeno peppers with 4 TBS olive oil, crushed red pepper, thyme, oregano & a sprinkling of salt.  Place tomatoes cut side down on a greased (with cooking spray) or parchment paper lined cooking sheet & roast in the 350 degree oven for about one hour.

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Meanwhile, saute the onions in 1/4 cup olive oil on low to medium-low heat, stirring often, for about 90 minutes.  This will release their sugar & caramelize them nicely.  Once they are caramelized, add tomato paste (if using) & saute for a few more minutes – stirring to blend with the onions.  Set aside.

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Once the cashews have soaked for an hour, puree them in a blender or food processor with the water until perfectly smooth.  Set aside.

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If using celery, saute the celery in 2 TBS in a large stock pot in olive oil for 5 minutes or until it becomes tender.  Add the 5 remaining garlic cloves & continue cooking another 2-3 minutes.  Or – if not using celery – start just by sauteing the 5 cloves or garlic for a minute or two & carry on as follows.  Add the caramelized onion & tomato paste mixture.  Add the cashew puree.  Stir.

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When the tomatoes are done roasting, see if any of the charred skins can be easily plucked off.  Be careful not to burn yourself.  Pluck off the skins that come away easily & discard.  If the skin resists, leave it be.  Cut the stems off your serrano/jalapenos & then add all the roasted items and any juices to the stock pot.  Stir to combine.  Add the chopped basil and the bouillon cube (if using).

At this point, you may or may not want to add some water.  This is a judgement call based purely on how thick or thin you like your bisque.  I went VERY thick & did not add much water at all – less than a cup in total.  I used & immersion blender & pureed everything in the stock pot.  You can do this or blend it in batches in a blender or food processor.   Whether or not you add much water, once the soup is blended, taste it & add salt & pepper to taste.  If you want a really creamy bisque, adding a half pint of heavy cream would achieve this nicely.

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Tomato Bisque three ways: with balsamic vinegar and with grated cheese & with fresh basil.

Leftover Hoppin’ John Fritters with Heirloom Tomato & Avocado Salsa

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2013

Follow @celisemccarthy

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

I made enough Hoppin’ John to cater a friggin’ party.  I’ve been eating it since a few days before New Year’s & I froze some & I still have more than I can possibly eat.  I had to find a way to reinvent these black eyed peas so that I could keep eating them & not waste any.  Necessity – the mother of invention.  Let me present to you – Hoppin’ John Fritters with a delicious tomato & avocado salsa!!!

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Very easy & really delicious.  I served it with leftover white rice & I was quite delighted with myself.  I also made myself little fried green tomato & mozzarella towers – but I will post that recipe later this week.

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Leftover Hoppin’ John Fritters with Heirloom Tomato & Avocado Salsa

INGREDIENTS

Makes about ten fritters

2 cups Hoppin’ John (black-eyed peas)

1/4 cup flour (I used a gluten free variety)

1/2 cup bread crumbs (I used panko AND regular ones)

1 cup additional breadcrumbs

1 egg

SALSA

DOUBLE (maybe even triple) THIS SALSA RECIPE if you are serving all ten fritters.

1 large avocado – diced

1/2 jalapeno – diced fine (optional)

1/2 heirloom tomato – diced

12 cherry or grape tomatoes – quartered

juice of 1/2 lime

drizzle of olive oil

cilantro – chopped (for salsa & garnish)

S&P to taste

oil for frying (I used cheap olive oil)

DIRECTIONS

For the Fritters:

Put two cups of Hoppin’ John in a bowl & mash them up a bit with a potato masher.  Blend in the flour, egg and 1/2 cup bread crumbs.  Form into patties (I got 10 out of this quantity) and press each patty into the remaining bread crumbs to coat all sides.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (or more) to let them solidify a bit.

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Meanwhile, for the salsa:

Try to get different color cherry or grape tomatoes & a different color heirloom tomato for a pretty salsa.  Simply mix all the ingredients except for the avocado.  Add that just before serving.

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Take your fritters from the fridge.  I pressed a little extra bread crumbs into them.  Heat the olive oil and carefully place your fritters in – a few at a time.  Fry until they are golden (2 minutes or so) & turn.  When evenly browned – remove & place on a warm pan in the oven until all your fritters are done.

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Served topped with salsa, fresh cilantro & a nice side of rice!

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Heirloom Tomato & Onion Tart with Arugula & Basil with Homemade Herbed Crust

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2012

This recipe was, again, born of ingredients I had on hand.  I had that gigantic heirloom tomato from Figueroa Produce.

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& refused to let it go to waste – plus about 40 pounds of cheese left over from a dinner party last weekend.  I grated, dated & froze the blocks of cheddar & mozzarella – thinking I could thaw them down the road & use them on pizzas – but the odds & ends of the other cheese were still in my fridge, guilting me into action.

I am usually intimidated by pastry & generally opt to buy frozen, uncooked pie crusts but that seemed like a big cheat in a food porn blog, so, I made this crust myself.  It was REALLY easy – so – do not be afraid.

I researched how one cooks a tart pastry & SO MANY sites said to line the raw dough (in the tart pan) with foil & fill it with beans (to keep the crust from rising up), bake it for 20 minutes, remove the beans & foil & bake another 15.  This seemed crazy to me – as I thought the crust will have seen all the heat it can bare & end up over-cooked if I filled it with ingredients & then cooked it more.  But SO MANY people outlined the prep this way – whether the filling was going to be raw or need an hour in the oven – so – I trusted.  I shouldn’t have.  You will see in my pictures that my crust is overdone.

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My recipe below is going to try to help you avoid this fate. Also – I need to buy a tart pan with a removable bottom.  I used a ceramic tart pan.  It worked but the ability to remove the tart from the pan you cook it in is a nice touch and they are cheap!  See HERE.

Anyway – despite the crusty, crust – this was still quite yummy…so feel free to tweak ingredients & give it a try.  This is even better at room temperature the next day!!!!

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Homemade Herbed Tart Crust Pastry

enough for TWO tarts

INGREDIENTS

3 cups flour

12 TBS butter (salted, if possible) – CHILLED and cubed

2 eggs

1+ TBS fresh thyme (or diced fresh sage or fresh parsley or fresh oregano)

water

1/4 tsp salt

DIRECTIONS

Mix the salt & flour together in your food processor (or in a bowl – as this dough could be made by hand – just not by me).

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Pulse in the butter until it is incorporated into the dough.  Pulse in the fresh herbs.  Pulse in the two eggs.  Add water 1 TBS at a time until small lumps of dough form.

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Divide the dough into two balls & on a lightly floured surface, roll the two balls into disks large enough to line your tart pan.  I rolled one out – and lined my tart pan.  The other, I kept in a ball, rolled it in some flour & then wrapped it in plastic wrap to keep in the fridge for another tart another day.

When you line your tart pan – press the dough in gently, starting from the center & work to the edges.  I wrapped my pastry over the rim & then cut away extra.  You can cut it at the rim – for a cleaner look.

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Refrigerate your pastry-lined tart pan for at least 30 minutes.

When ready to assemble & bake the tart – take the tart pan from the refrigerator & prick the bottom of your crust with a fork several times – then line it with foil.  Put beans or some other oven safe thing (I used a pot lid – which I promptly burned myself touching 15 minutes later) into the crust & bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven.

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Now your crust is half-cooked & ready for its contents.   As you can see – mine above – was already too cooked to withstand the additional 45 minutes it got in the oven with the tomatoes & onions.  😦

I used the extra dough cut from the rim by braiding it, baking it for about 20 minutes & then dipping it is some warm roasted tomato sauce.  Delicious!

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Heirloom Tomato & Onion Tart with Arugula & Basil

INGREDIENTS

2-3 medium heirloom tomatoes – different colors, if possible – sliced 1/4 inch thick

1/2 lb mixed grated cheese (I used gruyere, smoked gouda & cheddar)

1 cup arugula

1 small red onion – sliced thinly

1 small white onion – sliced thinly

(or two onions of your choice)

4 scallions – sliced

1 TBS fresh thyme

a handful of shredded basil

olive oil

S&P to taste

DIRECTIONS

Heat your oven to 375 degrees.

Spread a double layer of paper towels in your sink or on the counter.  Spread the tomato slices on the towel.  Sprinkle with salt.  Press another layer of paper towels on top of this.  Let rest while you complete the following steps.

Heat maybe a TBS olive oil in a pan & saute your onions & scallions until they begin to caramelize – 10 minutes or more.

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With a pastry brush (or your fingers, spread a very thin layer of olive oil over the bottom of your crust & sprinkle with the fresh thyme.  Sprinkle a little cheese on top of this & then layer the arugula on top of that.

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Reserve another small portion of the cheese for topping & mix the remainder of the cheese with the sauteed onion/scallion mixture.  Layer the onion mixture on top of the arugula.  Arrange the drained & dry tomatoes on top of this, interchanging colors (if you have more than one color) in a circular fan pattern.  Top with the reserved grated cheese.

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Bake in your oven at 375 for 3–45 minutes or until the cheese is melted & beginning to brown.  If your crust is getting too brown – try to protect it with some aluminum foil.  Let the tart rest for 5-10 minutes.  Spread the shredded basil on top, add fresh cracked pepper & enjoy!!!    This is even better at room temperature the next day!!!!

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