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Posts tagged ‘fresh tomatoes’

Mediterranean Cold Cous Cous Salad

Cous Cous salad

Cous Cous salad

No recipe required here, all you need is some Israeli Cous Cous and whatever vegetables you might like to add, make as much or as little as you want and adjust to your own personal preference, I am sure you know that there are two kinds of cous cous readily available there is a finer grain semolina and the Israeli which is much larger and when cooked al dente is nicely toothsome, it is my favorite and I use it all the time. It actually reminds me of Pastene which is almost identical in size and texture. I did not add onion or garlic although I think it would be good. For a milder onion flavor I used some chives. NOTE: Don’t skip the toasted pine nuts, they add so much to this salad.

Israeli cous cous

Israeli cous cous

I throw this salad together almost weekly, the ingredients vary depending on what I have that needs to be used. As shown, here is the list of ingredients:

Israeli Cous Cous

Fresh tomatoes



Feta Cheese

Fresh herbs, basil, parsley and chives

dried mint

toasted pine nuts

lemon juice

olive oil

salt and pepper

IMG_5790Make the cous cous first, bring a pot of generously salted water to a boil, add the cous cous and cook for 8-10 minutes. Remove from stove and pour into a strainer, run cold water over it to stop the cooking process, it’s ok if they are slightly hard. They will soften in the dressing and I recommend letting this sit for a few hours or even over night. I chop the tomatoes, add the herbs and olives and toss in the cous cous, toast the pine nuts and crumble the feta into the salad, squeeze some lemon and drizzle on the olive oil, do this according to however you like it. Season with salt and pepper. There is no right or wrong way to make this salad, ¬†really!!! ¬†Have fun with it.

The Tomato Cobbler That Wasn’t….. It Became Soup

Tomato and farmers cheese soup

Tomato and farmers cheese soup

I recently saw a post on Food52 and it had a photo of a recipe from Huckleberry the new (brilliant) cookblook by Zoe Nathan, I ordered a book, my copy hasn’t arrived but I had some tomatoes I needed to use so I thought I will make the tomato and goat cheese cobbler that was pictured,(how hard could that be). It looked incredible. Long story short, mine didn’t work. I had some gorgeous cherry and small very ripe tomatoes that I cut in half and quartered, added minced garlic and shallot and put in a oval baking dish along with some farmers cheese instead of goats cheese (because thats what I had), off to a good start right? I made the top for the cobbler using my recipe that I use from my spiced plum cobbler. Put the dough on top of the tomatoes in rounds, put in a 375 degree oven and guess what, the tomatoes were so juicy they literally boiled the cobbler top. The tomatoes and cheese smelled great but I could see this was not going to have a happy ending. I removed from the oven, scooped off the cobbler top and unhappily threw it away but I saved the tomatoes, they were literally swimming in juice and tasted great. I did not want to waste the tomatoes so I put them in my blender and made soup. Fresh tomato and farmers cheese soup. It’s velvety, creamy, mildly cheesy has just a hint of garlic and onion and loads of fresh tomato taste, It really was a happy surprise. A little voice kept telling me that the tomatoes would get soupy but I didn’t listen, so it’s back to the drawing board on the cobbler. I’ll wait for my cookbook to arrive. But this soup is really good!! I was planning on taking this to Fiesta Friday #34 but I’ll have to make something else.

Tomato and farmers cheese

Tomato and farmers cheese

Tomato and farmers cheese Soup

Serves 4

3 cups ripe tomatoes (cherry tomatoes halved larger tomatoes quartered)

1 shallot minced

1 clove garlic minced

1 pinch red pepper flakes

1 tsp organic brown sugar (optional)

6 oz farmers cheese

salt and pepper to taste

Pre heat oven to 375 degrees. Place tomatoes, garlic, shallot, farmers cheese, red pepper flakes and optional brown sugar in the oven for 30 minutes. The tomatoes will become very juicy and soft. Remove from oven and let cool about 15 minutes. Pour all of it into the blender or food processor or use and immersion blender and process until smooth. Pour through sieve to remove any tomato skins and ensure a velvety smooth soup. Heat and serve.