Recipes and Girly Household Tips

I've had a few requests for my sister's Roasted Tomato Basil Soup recipe. It's so delicious. If you make it, let me know!

Roasted Tomato Basil Soup

2.5 pounds of fresh tomatoes (use any variety of tomato you like and you can mix them... heirlooms, cherry, vine and plum)

6 cloves of garlic, peeled

2 small yellow onions

1/2 cup of good olive oil (California Ranch is my favorite Olive Oil)

Freshly ground black pepper and salt

1 teaspoon thyme

1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes (optional)

1 quart chicken broth

2 bay leaves

4 tablespoons butter

An entire bunch of fresh basil

3/4 cup heavy cream. Jenn adds a few splashes of the heavy cream. It keeps the soup healthier.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Wash and cut tomatoes into halves. Spread tomatoes, garlic cloves, & onions onto a baking tray. Drizzle with 1/2 cup of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20-30 minutes or until caramelized.

Remove roasted tomatoes, garlic, & onion from the oven and transfer to a large stock pot. Add 3/4 cup of the chicken broth, bay leaves, thyme, red pepper, and butter. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until liquid has reduced by a third.

Wash and dry basil leaves, add to pot. Use a hand blender to puree the soup until smooth. Return soup to low heat, add cream and adjust consistency with remaining chicken broth, if necessary. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Jenn making the soup and sipping wine

Jenn served the soup with a Mahi Mahi-Veggie Taco

Asparagus Casserole
I also had a few requests for the Asparagus Casserole I made for Thanksgiving Lunch. It was so creamy and rich. I found the recipe in the Paula Deen magazine, need I say more. Unfortunately, I didn't take a photo but the finished product looks just like a green bean casserole.

1⁄3 cup butter

3 pounds asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

1 onion, chopped

1 (8-ounce) package sliced baby bella mushrooms

1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour

1 1⁄4 cups whole milk

1 cup shredded Swiss cheese

1cup sour cream

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1⁄2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 (6-ounce) can french-fried onions

Preheat oven to 350˚. Spray a 13x9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add asparagus, onion, and mushrooms; cook for 5 to 6 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Add flour; cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add milk, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until mixture is thickened. Stir in cheese, sour cream, salt, lemon zest, and pepper.

Spoon mixture into prepared pan, and bake for 30 minutes, or until hot and bubbly. Top with onions, and bake for 5 minutes longer.

I'd like to share a few girly household tips...

Tip #1

Have you ever had the leftover wax from a votive candle get stuck in your candle holder? I thought everyone knew this trick but Danielle told me many people don't know and I should share. The best way to remove the remaining votive candle wax is to put the candle holder in your freezer. Let it completely freeze and the wax will slide right out. It's a great trick!

Tip #2
Before I left for NYC, my mom informed me that I should cover the outside pipes and faucets because San Antonio was expecting a winter freeze. She was on her way to my house and I asked her if she would help me. I have never had to perform such a task.

When my mom arrived she told me I needed old hand towels and rope. Okay, I've got a few old hand towels but ROPE... not over here. I searched the garage for something to tie the outside pipes with and I found tulle. Yes, I have tulle in the garage. Here's our masterpieces.


Beth said...

hahaha! The tulle is so YOU! Too funny~

The soup sounds delicious! I'm thinking I'll have to try it soon!

Merry Christmas Jill!

jana said...

I love that you even manage to make covering pipes pretty - that's talent!

Rachel H. said...

The soup sounds delicious...I want to try it ASAP! :)

Lauren Kelly said...

Those recipes look amazing!!!!! :)

Sweet Simplicity said...

Great tips! The tulle is cracking me up and just screams you. I'm printing the soup recipe. It sounds delish.

amazeingteacher said...

oh jill, i'm laughing out loud at your outside faucet cover!!!!! you are so funny! i just did this to mine this week...well not quite so girly but they are covered for winter. have a great weekend!!

Sara said...

Those are the prettiest faucet covers I've ever seen. :)

The soup sounds delish; I love homemade soup.

Pink Preppy Party Girl said...

This sounds pretty wonderful. I love how you are smiling while cooking.

Heather said...

I am cracking up about the tulle! Lost track of your blog for a while, but I am so glad to have found you again. Have a great Friday.

Shoshanah said...

Only you could turn pipes into something so cute! I love it

BroncoMom said...

Love the Tulle, you are right so GIRLY so perfect.

sweetpralinemadness said...

LOL....Tulle and cute color hand towels. I believe we were seperated at birth. We think too much alike. :)

Thanks for posting your sister's soup recipe. I can't wait to try it. You know how much I love cooking. Have a awesome weekend!


Abbi said...

yumm...looks soooo good!!

love, love the tulle! it's so girly..so you and so me!! i love it!!!
have a great weekend jill!!

Danielle said...

Only you. I love it. And I think the candle trick is GENIUS. You're so smart!

Football & Fried Rice said...

Oh, the tulle had me laughing too - mostly because it really is So you :=)

YUMM-O, the soup looks so delicious - I think here with our cold winters, it will be a perfect dinner!

Sweet Simplicity said...

I made the soup tonight. DELISH! Thanks for posting the recipe.

The Sheffield Scoop said...

Hi, I just stumbled across your blog and wanted to say you are my kinda gal. I was laughing reading through a few. Cooking, girly housework, planing and organizing and decorating. I think we may be sisters :) You blog is presh! :)