Archive for July, 2009

close up bruschetaKACHOW!!  That is what can be said about this…. take a look at the big tray I made… between 6 people it was gone… very quickly!

So easy to make….and not a bank account killer either… really very reasonable! Which is good because this recipe was chosen as the first Barefoot on a Budget Challenge.  I made a ton of it and although I didn’t save the receipts (I’m bad I know!) it fed a lot of people for not a lot of $$.  This was the appetizer we did for our Memorial Day BBQ. It was so good… try it!

pepper bruscheta


Bruschetta with Sauteed Sweet Peppers and Creamy Gorgonzola

Source: Ina Garten

Serves: Makes 18 rounds


  • Good olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced into thin strips
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and sliced into thin strips
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained
  • 2 tablespoons julienned fresh basil leaves
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Baguette
  • 3 ounces creamy Gorgonzola or other blue cheese, at room temperature

How to pull it all together:

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the peppers and cook until soft, about 12 to 15 minutes. Sprinkle with the sugar and continue cooking for 2 more minutes. Stir in the capers and basil, and season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Set aside. (I added some additional Italian Seasoning as I had a bit left that I wanted to get rid of)
  • Slice the baguette crosswise into 18 thin round slices. Brush the bread rounds lightly with olive oil on 1 side. Arrange them in rows, oil side up, on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and toast in the oven until lightly browned, about 7 to 10 minutes.
  • Top each toast round with a teaspoonful of the pepper mixture. Place 2 small pieces of Gorgonzola on top.
  • Return the toast to the oven for 1 to 2 minutes and warm through. Serve immediately.

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100_1921Sigh…. BIG SIGH….. wow… I am so sad to say that this one was a big bummer! No one liked it at all really. Not sure why… I followed directions to the “T”…. maybe we’re just not fans of sun-dried tomato? I don’t know… it wasn’t so bad you would spit it out… but I certainly wouldn’t go back for seconds…. I’ll have to check and see what the other Barefooters said about this one….


Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Source: Barefoot Contessa Family Style

Serves: 6-8


  • 1/2 lb fusilli pasta
  • kosher salt
  • olive oil
  • 1 pound ripe tomatoes, medium diced
  • 3/4 cup good black olives, such as kalamata, pitted and diced
  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella, medium diced
  • 6 sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and chopped

For the dressing:

  • 5 sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 6 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, diced
  • 1 teaspoon capers, drained
  • 2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1 cup packed basil leaves, julienned

How to pull it all together:

  • Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling, salted water with a splash of olive oil to keep it from sticking together.
  • Boil for 12 minutes, or according to directions on the package
  • Drain well and allow to cool
  • Place the pasta in a bowl and add the tomatoes, olives, mozzarella, and chopped sun dried tomatoes.
  • For the dressing, combine sun dried tomatoes, vinegar, olive oil, garlic, capers, salt and pepper in a food processor until almost smooth.
  • Pour the dressing over the pasta , sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and basil and toss well

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100_1187I confess…. I’ve made these before.  I also confess… they are “outrageous”.  I also confess… they disappeared within a day.

So I am very far behind in my blog posts.  I do apologize.  I am not managing my time wisely!  I made these brownies for a BBQ we had Memorial Day weekend.  I won’t go into big specifics on how delish these were…. more like fudge then a brownie… but this picture should say it all.  Sorry Kristen, but this is a funny picture! Also, notice the hand reaching in from the other side of the table….100_1183

Here is the recipe:

Outrageous Brownies 

Source: Barefoot Contessa-Ina Garten

Serves: Makes @ 20 large brownies


  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1 pound plus 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
  • 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 6 extra-large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons instant coffee powder ( I only used a smidge, or I sometime leave it out. Gets us too wired!)
  • 2 tablespoons real vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 ¼ cups flour, divided
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups diced walnut pieces  ( I left these out)

How to pull it all together:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 13 by 18 by 1 1/2-inch sheet pan.
  • Melt together the butter, chocolate chips, and unsweetened chocolate on top of a double boiler. Cool slightly. Stir together the eggs, instant coffee, vanilla and sugar. Stir in the warm chocolate mixture and cool to room temperature.
  • Stir together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add to cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the walnuts and chocolate chips with flour to coat. Then add to the chocolate batter. Pour into prepared pan.
  • Bake for about 30 minutes, or until tester just comes out clean. Halfway through the baking, rap the pan against the oven shelf to allow air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. Do not overbake! Cool thoroughly, refrigerate well and cut into squares.

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