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5/19/10

fresh summertime tomato sauce

I love the combination of red, green and white ingredients together!

First of all, please ignore two things: This tomato sauce recipe is for fresh sauce, not cooked, but I warmed mine in a pan on the stove. Second: If you look close, you can see that I didn't use basil. I didn't have any, but I did have parsley in the fridge. So...


This is a fabulous recipe uncooked or gently cooked. As in just warmed up. Which is what I did here.


Fresh Tomato Basil Sauce 

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves minced garlic
3 medium chopped ripe tomatoes1/4 cup chopped coarsely, fresh basil1 teaspoon salt

Stir together everything in a medium bowl. Let sit at room temperature for a bit to blend flavors. Serve over your favorite pasta.


After I cooked it gently. Just enough to warm it up. I like to add a few twists of pepper.


5/16/10

a happy weekend hiking and biking

Pikes Peak's snowy top in the background.

Spent Saturday afternoon hiking the ridge at Red Rocks with good friends. The dark clouds moved over us before we could walk out and a steady rain, which turned into hail at one point, stayed with us until we reached the jeep. It was cold, but sure felt great to be out!


Apple blossoms along the trail today.


Sunday morning felt so wonderful outside I just had to hop on the bike, even though there was plenty of work to be done. I put off most of my chores yesterday to hike. But I hadn't been out on the bike at all this year and we are finally having a break from cold wet weather here in Colorado.

It was perfect! Lilac bushes in bloom everywhere, the scent reminding me of childhood days in the Midwest. Robins were busy maintaining their nests and yellow finches, startled when I rode by, flitted around in small groups. The sky was as blue and calm as the photo above.


5/9/10

strawberry layer cake - a real cake


For mother's day (and my birthday in a few days) I baked a strawberry layer cake that I had picked out for some time now. The recipe has been posted on my fridge, teasing me for weeks.


It wasn't until I had already made the cake layers yesterday, after finding the recipe on the Cooking Light website, that I read the reviews (comments) posted about this cake. It's a good thing, because I probably would not have made it otherwise. The comments, for the most part, were not good.

But my cake was fabulous!! And more...my Mom loved it! Her review: "Not too sweet, but just right. The frosting is yummy. The cake is dense, which is how cakes used to be made in the old days. Not like the fluffy fall-apart cakes of today."
 
Go to Strawberry Layer Cake for the magazine's recipe. I didn't want to use Grand Marnier in the frosting, so instead I used 1 T. lemon juice and 1 T. milk. The frosting was a tad runny. I recommend adding more powdered sugar for thickness. Or try eliminating 1 T. of liquid.

I also baked the cake until it was done, not the 30 minutes mentioned in the recipe. It took an additional 15 minutes more before the cake was ready. I am at 6000 ft. above sea level, but still. I think it's because the batter is heavier. (I did beat it pretty good too.) Do the toothpick test!

Oh, and I added a layer of thin sliced strawberries between the cake layers, on top of the frosting, then put the second layer on top. Yummy!!

It's a keeper!!
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