Category Archives: For the Love of Food

Basil Summer

I love eating, and to be honest John and I normally cook a lot. When we first started dating we would collect recipes all week and then spend all day Saturday or Sunday cooking and baking. Probably our weirdest concoction of recipes… beef empanadas, cherry pie, chip dip & baked brie.

Lately we have not even used the oven let alone cooked a meal of quality. Which is really a bummer for both of us. The most delish meals come from summer veggies and besides eating them raw, we havent eaten enough. Any who we have cooked! Yes, but don’t worry I didn’t use my oven. We made a couple of things with all of the great basil and herbs our visitors this past weekend brought us.

Herbs make the cutest centerpieces.

That is before I started wiping up these two great recipes. Tomato basil soup & pesto sauce (both of which are in the freezer) and I have no plan making anything with them until it isn’t 90 degrees outside.

Rich Tomato Basil Soup

  • 4 tomatoes – seeded and diced
  • 4 cups tomato juice
  • 14 leaves fresh basil

Place tomatoes and juice in a stock pot over medium heat. Simmer for 30 minutes. I don’t have an immersion blender (put that on my Christmas list) to puree the tomato mixture along with the fresh basil leaves, so I just ladle out a portion at a time and blend them then return the puree to the stock pot. Often I take this mixture and portion it for the freezer. Then when it comes time to make a bowl or two of this thick and creamy soup I collect a few more ingredients

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
Place the tomato mixture in a pot over medium heat, when mixture is hot but not boiling stir in the heavy cream and butter. Season with salt and pepper. Heat, stirring until the butter is melted. Do not boil or you will have a mess on your hands.
YUM this soup is so easy to make and is great to heat and eat with crusty bread and a salad for a week night meal.

This is the basil I grew

Homemade Freezer Pesto

  • 12 fresh basil leaves
  • 1/3 cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons  olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 garlic

Place everything in the blender (I use the Magic Bullet (which is where I got the recipe)). Blend until everything becomes a grainy paste. The leaves should be chopped into a uniform size.

John likes to freeze in small batches so you can just get however much pesto you need. Freezing in an ice-cube trail works well, after they freeze pop them out and into a Ziplock. This way when you need a cube or so of pesto you can just grab one instead of melting an entire container or baggie of the basil deliciousness.

Do you make your own pesto? Anyone else getting desperate for a chest freezer? I need one badly as my freezer is full. Is there anything that you make and save for the winter months?