Tuscan Kale Soup
– 1 Tablespoon olive oil
– 1 medium sweet yellow onion, diced
– 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
– 1 (32 oz) box low-sodium chicken broth or homemade broth*
– 4-5 cups kale, chopped and packed
– 2 (14.5 oz) cans fire roasted canned tomatoes
– 1 (14.5 oz) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
– 1 – 1 1/2 cups carrots, peeled and sliced
1. In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and sauté for 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another 4 minutes.
2. Add broth, kale, tomatoes and carrots and cover. Cook about 10 minutes.
3. Add beans and cook on low for 30 minutes.
4. Serve hot.
* Homemade broth – we hard boiled a chicken carcass for 45 minutes with bay leaves, celery, sweet onions, garlic cloves, salt pepper and 8 cups of water. Reduce heat to low and cook for up to 3 hours.
Farro? Heard of it? Cooked with it? Well if your answer is no to any of these questions, T.W.O. will be sure to change that to YES! Farro is a food product composed of the grains of certain wheat species. It is debatable about the exact definition, so we won’t get into it! Farro originated in Italy – Tuscany to be exact. It can sometimes be called barley since they both have similar characteristics. Okay, enough of the definition stuff, lets get cooking!
– 1 ½ cup faro, uncooked
– 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
– 4 ½ cups baby kale, chopped
– ½ cup carrots, thick strips
– 1 cup corn kernels, fresh or roasted
For the dressing:
– 4 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
– 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
– 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
– 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
– 1 shallot, diced
– 1 clove garlic, diced
– 2 teaspoons parsley, chopped
– ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
– Garlic powder
Bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a large covered saucepan. Add the farro, pinch of salt and garlic powder. Return to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally until the farro is puffy and slightly chewy. This should take 20-25 minutes.
While the farro is cooking, make your dressing. In a bowl combine the lemon juice, vinegar, Dijon mustard and soy sauce. Mix well. Add in shallot, garlic, parsley, olive oil, salt and pepper.
When the farro is done cooking, drain immediately and rinse with cold water. Drain again and transfer to a bowl. Add cherry tomatoes, corn, kale and carrots. Mix the dressing into the farro. Serve immediately. T.W.O. grilled some fresh cod to go with the farro salad. It was a delicious addition to this protein packed, flavorful salad.
If you haven’t already noticed, T.W.O. enjoys traveling. And like most people, we usually get a souvenir (well actually, we should say souvenirs) when we travel! One of those souvenirs has to be a hat. Yes – a hat. It’s an item that we will wear the rest of our trip and get to bring it back home to the States. Beach hat, winter hat, ball cap – doesn’t matter! Here are some of our favorite hats we got a long the way.
Palm Springs/ Stagecoach:
It’s Friday Night Pizza with T.W.O.!! First off, Happy Valentine’s Day to everyone!! Hope you are spending the day with loved ones and enjoying some delicious food! If you haven’t already decided on dinner plans, here is a great last minute recipe to add to your night. Pesto Artichoke & Mushroom Pizza. The pesto combined with the artichoke hearts and mushrooms make this pizza a savory meal that your special someone will surely enjoy! Warning: this pizza contains garlic!
– Pizza dough
– 1 cup marinated artichoke hearts, sliced
– 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
– 3to 4 cloves garlic, chopped
– 2 to 3 cups mozzarella
* T.W.O. used Bolani Basil Pesto (all natural, low fat)
Preheat oven to 425ᴼF.
Roll out the pizza dough on a floured/ cornmeal surface. Once the dough is evenly rolled out, transfer the dough to a greased cookie sheet. Next, spread the pesto onto the dough, making sure you reach all the edges. Then sprinkle the mozzarella to the pizza. Spread the garlic evenly on top of cheese along with the artichoke hearts and mushrooms.
Let the pizza rise for about 15 minutes. Note – you don’t want to put the pizza in a cold oven, so make sure your oven reaches 425ᴼF. Once the oven is ready, place the pizza in the oven and watch closely. Keep the oven door close so the heat stays in. The pizza will take 15-20 minutes. Once done, take the pizza out of the oven and let it sit for 5 minutes prior to cutting.
Cheers to another successful Friday Night Pizza Night!