Category Archives: Summer

Pesto Tomatoes

Pesto Tomatoes

These little bite-size appetizers pack a big flavor punch.  It’s a good thing to make when you have endless amounts of summer basil that you just aren’t sure what to do with.

For Pesto:

  • 2/3 cups pine nuts, toasted
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 4 cups basil leaves, packed
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1/2 tsp. coarse sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp. fresh ground pepper
  • 2/3 cup good quality extra-virgin olive oil

For Tomatoes:

  • 24 cocktail tomatoes
  • 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 Tbsp. butter, melted

For Pesto:

  1. Toast pine nuts in a dry heavy skillet over medium heat, about 4 minutes.
  2. Put garlic through a press and add to food processor. Add basil, Parmigiano-Reggiano, toasted pine nuts, salt, pepper, and basil leaves. Turn food processor on low until everything is finely ground.
  3. Slowly drizzle in extra-virgin olive oil.

For Tomatoes:

  1. Mix together panko breadcrumbs with butter to moisten then add 1 cup of Parmesan to breadcrumbs.
  2. With a sharp pairing knife.  Cut a circle around the top of each tomato being careful not to slice through the bottom of the tomato.
  3. Using your finger, carefully hollow out each tomato.
  4. Place 1 tsp. of pesto in each tomato then stuff Parmesan/breadcrumb mixture into tomatoes until they are overflowing.
  5. Place stuffed tomatoes in mini muffin tins.
  6. Bake at 350F for 10 minutes or until browned.
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Posted by on September 21, 2013 in Appetizers, Summer, Uncategorized


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Zucchini Fritters with Lemony Mayo


Zucchini Fritters with Lemony Mayo

3 years ago I planted my first garden.  I learned very quickly that two people do NOT need 5 flourishing zucchini plants!  We had so much zucchini that I bet I made these fritters 50 times.  Needless to say, I was “frittered-out” by the end of that summer.

It took me until yesterday to have a craving for them.  I forgot how light, fluffy, and full of flavor they are.  The lemony mayo adds just the right amount of creaminess and zing to make all the flavors pop.  So go crazy, make some fritters, and see if you can have more restraint than I did!

Yield: 30 bite-sized fritters
Time: 30 minutes


  • 1 large zucchini, diced
  • 1/2 jalapeno, minced with seeds
  • 6 slices bacon, cooked crisp and chopped fine, reserve bacon fat for frying
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 cup mayo
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon


  1. Toss zucchini, jalapeno, and bacon in a large bowl to combine.
  2. In a small bowl, lightly beat egg. Stir in milk, cayenne, salt, and pepper.  Pour over zucchini mixture and toss to coat.
  3. Add flour and baking powder to zucchini mixture and stir to combine.
  4. Heat bacon fat over medium heat.  Drop spoonfuls of zucchini mixture into bacon fat making sure to not overcrowd.  Cook for 2 minutes or until golden brown.  Flip fritters and flatten with the back of a spatula.  Cook another 2 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.
  5. Whisk together mayo and lemon juice and serve with warm fritters.

Posted by on September 2, 2013 in Appetizers, Summer, Uncategorized


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Burrata and Basil Gremolata with Garlic Toast

Burrata and Basil Gremolata with Roasted Garlic Toast


  • 1 bunch of basil
  • extra-virgin olive oil
  • cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • Burrata
  • French Baguette
  • 1 head garlic
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • arugula (garnish)


  1. Cut top of garlic off.  Drizzle with olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.  Roast for 25 minutes at 425F.  Drizzle tomatoes with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Roast for 10 minutes.
  2. Remove roasted garlic and mix with olive oil.  Slice baguette and brush with roasted garlic mixture.  Broil until crisp and golden.
  3. In a food processor, mix basil and 1/4 cup e.v.o.o.
  4. Serve all ingredients on a platter to assemble.  Garnish with fresh arugula.
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Posted by on April 1, 2012 in Appetizers, Summer, Uncategorized


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White Bean Guacamole

White Bean Guacamole

Makes about 4 cups


  • 2 (15oz) cans S&W White Beans, drained and rinsed
  • 4 avocados, chopped and divided
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • 2 Tbsp. lime juice
  • 1/2 cup red onion, chopped
  • 4 medium vine-riped tomatoes, chopped and drained
  • 1 Tbsp. light sour cream
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste


  1. Puree beans in food processor with lime juice, 3 of the avocados, and garlic cloves until very smooth.
  2. Transfer bean mixture to a large mixing bowl, add remaining ingredients, and mix to combine.
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Posted by on January 5, 2012 in Appetizers, Sides, Summer, Uncategorized


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