Tag Archives: Tomato

Spiderweb Soup (Tomato Soup)

It’s time for us to post recipes for Halloween.  I can’t believe a year has gone by already!  This year I want to try more practical and easy to make recipes, both sweet and savory.  Hopefully, I’ll have time to try out a couple of recipes to post before Halloween is upon us.  This recipe is just homemade tomato soup, with a cream spiral on top to form a spiderweb.  (To make this practical, just use the cream spiderweb idea on canned tomato soup for your kids… I’ll look the other way). This is the second time I try a homemade tomato recipe, because I have to admit that I like the taste of the commercial tomato soup we get from a packet or a can at the supermarket.  It’s what I always had since I was a kid, and the flavor of a particular brand is what I want when I think about tomato soup.  And I know I’m not alone.

Nonetheless, I still wanted to give homemade tomato soup another shot. I am very happy with the flavor of this recipe.  I’m a little embarrassed to say so, but… I love that it tastes like the commercial brand, only better. Plus, I know it’s all natural because I made it at home.  My daughter loved it, and so did my husband. I was asked to make it again.   So you can trust me on this, if you’re looking for a homemade tomato soup, this is the recipe to try.  The only thing I changed, is that I used chicken stock instead of vegetable stock. The original recipe added ½ cup of cream to the soup, apart from the cream used to make the spiral.  When I tasted the soup, it seemed “creamy” enough, so I didn’t add the cream, but it’s entirely up to you.  Also, I need to strain soups.  I like the smooth texture, and even though the original recipe didn’t mention any straining, I needed to do it. (I have childhood issues with lumps in food).

Helga

Spiderweb Soup

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Chunky Tomato Guacamole

Is it possible that we didn’t have any Guacamole recipes posted? We just couldn’t let this go on any longer. In a land that grows avocados wildly, it would be unthinkable we wouldn’t share our favorite recipe. We prepared this as an appetizer for a gathering with our friends a few weeks ago. We wanted something that would keep their stomachs busy while we prepared the main dish: Jambalaya!

The best part of this was that, as usual, we always end up hanging out in the kitchen. And since we were in a big big kitchen, we were able to hang out all while preparing the Jambalaya. Now, back to the Guacamole. We prepared it a good couple of hours before the dinner, so, the flavors would blend in perfectly with each other. Nothing better than a chunky guacamole to open the appetite!

Kitty & Helga

Chunky Guacamole

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Summer Succotash with Chicken & Avocado

It’s not succotash if it doesn’t have lima beans and corn in it!  I get curious about food and about certain dishes’ history, so I browsed around and learned that succotash was first prepared by Native Americans and it is now a dish that is mostly popular in the South and New England.   For me, it turned out to be a convenient and delicious new way to prepare vegetables at home. Plus, I can’t remember the last time I had lima beans, and I love them!

Actually, it had been so long since I had lima beans, that I hadn’t actually cooked them myself. In Guatemala we don’t usually use frozen produce or fruit, so if you want lima beans, you cook them yourself. I learned the hard way that you have to peel them first, before cooking them.  That wasn’t so much fun.   I went online to find a procedure to cook lima beans and all websites said the same thing. It said to soak them overnight, then cook them for about 45 mintues.  So I did. Then, I realized…they didn’t look green. Wait, what about peeling them!? I opened one, and there it was… green mush inside. It was too late. Sufferin’ Succotash, indeed.

Cooking Lima Beans: Take 2.  Thankfully, Mariano was on his way home and was able to run to the store and get me some more.  Sandra, who comes over a couple of times a week to help me with the cleaning, was there that day.  She just laughed and told me you have to peel them before cooking them, and that once they are peeled, they take about 5 minutes to cook.  Grrrr!   So, here’s my note on cooking lima beans at home, for those of us who can’t find frozen ones:

First, peel them and then drop them into a pot of boiling water for about 5 minutes.  They will be soft, but still firm enough to keep their shape.

I do hope you try this recipe, it’s definitely worth it!

Helga

Summer Succotash with Chicken & Avocado

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Couscous Tomato (Pico de Gallo) and Zucchini Salad

Last week was Holy Week, and that meant a long Holiday. I went away for a few days, and I was in charge of the lunch time salad. Rather than doing the old lettuce-tomato combo, I wanted to try something that would go well with grilled steak, using Pico de Gallo and would be fresh as well as filing. So, here is a Guatemalan version of a Couscous Tomato and Zucchinni Salad.

Additional to the zucchini, I added Pico de Gallo and Queso Fresco. Pico de Gallo is a fresh, uncooked salsa made from chopped tomato, white onion, lime juice or apple cider vinegar and fresh cilantro (coriander leaf). And for the Queso Fresco, it’s a Guatemalan-Mexican farmer’s cheese, but you can find this cheese at any US Walmart from the Cacique brand.

This salad was a huge success! Some of our friends haven’t had couscous before, and they were pleased. This is a crowd friendly recipe, giving about 12 big servings and it’s best served chilled.

Kitty

Couscous Tomato and Zuchinni Salad

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