George Chang’s Cannoli Dip…

A good friend, Mr. George Chang, gave my a tub of his fabulous Cannoli Dip to see how I could incorporate it into my baking.

After a few days of pondering I settled on the following:

Sugar Cookie Bowls filled with cannoli dip, fresh strawberries and a drizzle of chocolate to finish them off! Don’t tell me that doesn’t sound good?

I have to confess I did not make my own cookies this time round, just used a pack of Betty Crocker Sugar cookies. Only change I made was I added 2/3 of a cup of flour to ensure that the dough was more manageable.

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I grabbed one of my muffin/cupcake pans, turned it upside down and sprayed all the bottoms with non stick cooking spray.

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I divided the dough into 12 kind of equal sized balls, flattened them with my hands and then lightly pressed them around each cupcake holder.

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Instructions say to bake for 9-10 minutes, I left them in for about 15-18 minutes as I needed them to hold their shape. I removed them from the oven and let them cool down before I popped them off the pan.

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And there we have them, some lovely sugar cookie bowls ready to be filled with this light, fluffy, tasty cannoli dip!

I piped some dip into each cookie bowl, topped them off with some chopped strawberries, a little drizzle of chocolate and they are now ready to be tested….. ūüôā

Mr George Chang, hope you approve of the use of your fabulous cannoli dip ‚̧

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From My Garden to My Table……

Got back from a business trip to find my Basil flourishing and way out of control, and same goes for my mint, and both of them were screaming “PESTO, PESTO”!

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So Basil and Mint Pesto it is!

Plucked enough basil to fill about 4 1/2 cups and enough mint to fill 1 1/2 cups and chopped it up coarsely.

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Roasted 3/4 cup of chopped walnuts, chopped them up and added them together with the basil and mint into a food processor.

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Then I added 6 tablespoons of parmesan cheese and 1 1/2 tablespoons of chopped garlic and a nice sprinkle of red pepper flakes.

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Gave them a nice whiz in my food processor until it became a nice paste.

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Then slowly drizzled in 1 cup of olive oil and finally seasoned it with salt and pepper.

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All I can say is that it looks yummylicious! Can’t wait to make some homemade pasta and toss it in this aromatic, full of flavor, delicious concoction that made it from my garden to my table…… ‚̧

Dying Tomatoes can still have a purpose…

Dinner time, just like everyday! Extra tired and uninspired I made my way to the kitchen. We hadn’t had pasta in a while but wondering what I could serve it with. I usually keep back up sauces in jars but thought my family deserved something fresher and more natural.

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Luck of the draw has it that at the back of the fridge was a bag with vine ripened tomatoes, I got all excited and then noticed the poor things had seen better days! After a thorough analysis I concluded that they still hadn’t reached that “rotten stage” but were more on the “too soft stage of life”, so there is still hope!

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Out came my food processor, I ran outside and pulled a big bunch of basil and a nice helping of thyme and oregano and ran back in surrounded with these lovely aromatic herbs!

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I placed the mushy tomatoes and herbs into the food processor and let them become a bigger mush!

I chopped a small onion and a couple of garlic cloves and saut√©ed them¬†with a drizzle of olive oil till it was nice and tender and then I added my mush to it. Added some salt and pepper to taste, a nice squeeze of Sriracha Chili sauce and my lovely freshly made homemade “Fiery Tomato Sauce” was on its way!

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The¬†lovely aroma coming from the pan is hard to describe, but just take my word, it was to die for…….:-)

I let it all simmer for a bit and when nearly all the liquid from the tomatoes had evaporated I added a little bit of cream and presto!

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By then I had cooked some bow ties al dente, dished the pasta out and topped it with a healthy helping of my “fiery tomato sauce”.

So there you go, even dying tomatoes can be repurposed in a flash!