Cook these!

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Full disclosure:  This is the hubby's Margarita pizza.  He's the pizza man.
I love our pizza nights, but I wouldn't know where to begin making them myself.

I looooove food.  Love, love, love it.  I love to cook at home, I love to have someone cook for me, (who doesn't?) and I love to go out to eat at all different types of restaurants.  I also love to experiment with trying unique types of food.  Now, we're not talking Andrew Zimmern Bizarre Foods unique, but I do like to branch out and try things outside of the box.

All you need to know is that I could eat bread and sauce every single day, and if I had to choose between chocolate or cheese, I'll choose cheese every time.  I can hear the hubby saying, "Blasphemy!"  He has a wicked sweet tooth.  And when I tell him that, his response to me is, "You have a wicked beer tooth."  Touché.

That being said, I thought I'd share some of my favorite recipes.  Those always in the rotation recipes that I find myself making over and over.  As always, I'd love to hear from you in the comments.  Enjoy!

White Bean Soup/Stew
  • Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 1-2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1-2 celery sticks, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic
  •  2-4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cans (15 oz each) drained & rinsed cannelini or northern white beans
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp marjoram
  • pinch of dried parsley
  • half a box or so of ditalini or any other tiny pasta
  • freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Heat the oil in a large pot.  Add the carrots, celery, and onions and cook until the onions are translucent, about 5-7 minutes.  While the vegetables are cooking, in a separate bowl, use a stick blender to puree one can of the beans, adding a little bit of chicken broth to the mixture to make it easier to puree.  If you don't have a stick blender, you can use a potato masher or the back of a fork to mash the beans.  Add the garlic to the carrots, celery, and onion mixture and cook a minute more until the garlic is fragrant.  
Add the pureed beans to the vegetables.  Add the broth (less if you want a stew, more if you want a soup) the other can of beans, and the dried herbs.  Simmer for about 20 minutes on low.  If it gets too thick, add water or more chicken broth.  In a separate pot, boil water and follow package directions for tiny pasta.  Put the pasta to the side once cooked.

Serve a few scoops of the stew in a bowl, top with ditalini, grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, and a pinch of parsley.  Goes well with some crusty bread or garlic bread.  Add a side salad and you've got a hearty meal.  This one's a keeper!


Chicken Cacciatore

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