TGIF, y’all! : )
Actually, today begins a not-so-weekend-ish weekend for me… although I am taking this year easy because of our little love nugget Lucy coming in a few months, I am doing some singing this weekend. I fly out this afternoon to Orlando– tomorrow afternoon I am singing at a women’s conference in Kissimmee, FL, (not sure if it’s an open event??) and then tomorrow night doing a show in Tallahassee at Holy Cross Church @ 7p (all in the area are welcome! Come out and say hi!) … and then Sunday morning I’m singing a couple songs at a church, and get home Sunday night. I’m excited to sing and get to hang out with my brother for sure, but I am also kind of sad to leave home. I guess I’m what you’d call a home-body. Yes. Yes, I was homeschooled. What?
Anyway… if any of you Floridians wanna come out this weekend and say howdy, that’d be mighty fine.
I wanted to share a little recipe with you this morning. Even though Spring is almost on its way, it’s still pretty chilly out, and let’s face it- winter or summer, rain or shine, comfort food is always in. What’s my comfort food of choice? Italian, hands down. I’ve kind of been joking with Shane that Lucy’s going to have an Italian accent or at least call me “Ma-ma Mia” because I loved Italian pre-pregnancy, but now? … that’s really all I want. It’s just… comfort food. And delicious. And wonderful. And easy to make. And carbs are always involved. So many pro’s, and instead of continuing on with them, I’m gonna share a quick red-sauce recipe I make whenever I’m making spaghetti, lasagna, or anything fancy Italian that requires it:
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F
Yields enough sauce for about 4 servings
(All of this kind of requires eye-balling it, depending on the amount you want to make. I’m just going to give you what I usually do, but you can add or subtract whatever you want! That’s the beauty of it!)
– 2 packages of cherry tomatoes and/or 4 hot-house tomatoes
– 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into three chunks (doesn’t need to look pretty)
– 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
– 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed (I like to use a lot of garlic, sometimes I do more than four, but you can use less if you want)
– salt + pepper
– 1/4 cup grated fresh parmesan reggiano cheese
– 2 tbsp heavy cream (I use this for a richer sauce, but if I want it to be tomatoey and light, I usually don’t add it)
– 4 tbsp chopped fresh basil (I LOVE basil, so sometimes I add more than this even, but you can add as much/little as you want)
1) Drop your tomatoes and red pepper in a glass baking dish. ( **For a dinner for Shane & I plus a couple more people, I usually use a 4.5″ x 8.5″ dish, but if the amount you’re using won’t all fit, it’s not a big deal at all- just find something deep that will hold it all!) Smash the cloves of garlic, peel, and scatter them around the tomatoes and pepper. Drizzle the 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil evenly over the vegetables. Salt and pepper to taste.
2) Put the dish in the pre-heated oven for roughly 35 minutes, or until the tomatoes burst and the peppers and garlic are well roasted.
3) Pour contents of the baking dish in a heavy-duty blender or food processor along with the parmesan cheese and heavy cream, if so desired. Puree until desired consistency.
4) Add fresh basil at the end and lightly process until just combined.
That’s IT! … it is so, so, SO delicious and easy. When I have a few extra minutes I always skip using a store-bought tomato sauce and whip this up really quick. It tastes fresh and gourmet, and not only health-foodies love it, but it’s really only dirtying up a baking dish and a blender/food processor. Awesome, huh?
Let me know how you like it! Have a lovely weekend, guys!