Still have your Cherry Tomatoes?

I have a ton of ideas on what to do with these little red/orange/yellow candies. Cherry tomatoes add playful color and tangy flavor to appetizers, salads, pastas, kebabs, sautés, and stir fry’s.

I was in the mood for a BLT tonight but didn’t really feel like eating any bread and with all the fresh green and an avocado that needs eaten, I decided to make a Bacon, Avocado Lettuce and Cherry Tomato Salad with a wasabi warm bacon marinate or dressing.


3 slices applewood-smoked bacon
Enough torn lettuce mixture
½ pint cherry tomatoes cut in half
2-3 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 avocado (optional)
2 tablespoons wasabi mayonnaise
1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar or white balsamic


Cook bacon in large skillet over medium heat until crisp; transfer to paper towels. Crumble bacon coarsely. Pour off all but 1-tablespoon drippings from skillet; add the garlic, mayo, vinegar and salt to the skillet and whisk it together on low heat. Season with salt to fit.


Put half the warm dressing in the right size bowl. Add the tomatoes to the dressing and toss. Then add the rest of the ingredients and toss again. Sprinkle bacon bits over the top. Serve immediately.

Enjoy with gratitude!




Salad: Toss whole currant tomatoes with cooked orzo, chopped cilantro, and a lemon-cumin vinaigrette.

Pasta: Boil and drain spaghetti; toss with halved cherry tomatoes, sliced basil, minced garlic, olive oil, sea salt, and freshly ground black pepper.

Steak: Toss halved pear tomatoes with diced green and yellow bell peppers, green onions, and kernels of grilled corn; serve over grilled steak or chicken or…

In Health,
The Natural Cook Studio of Ben


Grilled Zucchini

My family had the chance to enjoy grilled zucchini last night – it is one of our favorite ways to enjoy this delicious vegetable.

Grilled Zucchini
Slice your zucchini long ways in slices no more that 1/2” thick. Marinate in Olive oil, vinegar and Italian spices, & garlic for at least 30 minutes.  I have also used an Italian type dressing.  Grill on the Bar-B-Que until tender but not mushy. It is a real hit and super easy to do.  Other veggies this works with are, peppers, Bok Choy, onions, mushrooms, carrots. Etc. be creative.
Enjoy those wonderful evenings by the grill!

Tomato Squares

This recipe was shared by Bette Fraser and adapted from the

Serves 16

1/2 pound butter
1/2 pound cream cheese, room temperature
1 teaspoon sale
1 teaspoon thyme
2 cups flour
3 tablespoons dijon mustard
5 tomatoes, thinly sliced
3 cups mozzarella cheese, grated
3 tablespoons basil leaves, julienned
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper

Make the pastry:  In a food processor, blend together the butter, cream cheese, sale and thyme.  Add the flour and process until dough comes together.  Pat the dough into a rectangle, wrap in plastic and refrigerate.

Preheat the oven 375.  On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough 1/2 inch think.  Fit into a 16×12 inch sheet pan, pressing the dough up the sides.  Bake the pastry for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown and cook through.  (If the pastry bubbles up at any point during baking, poke the bubbles down with the tip of a knife.)  Removed from the oven and let cool slightly.  Leave the oven on.

Brush the mustard over the cooled pastry.  Arrange the sliced tomatoes in a single layer on the pastry.  Sprinkle with the grated cheese and basil and drizzle the olive oil over all.  Season with salt and pepper and bake for about 20 minutes, until the cheese is bubbling.

Cut the pastry into squares.  Delicious warm or at room temperature.

Enjoy those yummy tomatoes!

Green Beans

I know Green Beans came in last weeks produce share with Agricultural Connections but I thought I would post this anyways for those that haven’t used theirs yet or has a bounty of their own beans growing in their personal Garden!

Thanks Laurie for sharing this recipe with us!

Trish’s Green Beans

1 lb.   whole green beans
1 cup sliced mushrooms,  if desired
Olive oil
Merlot wine
Montreal Steak seasoning (Or other seasoning that you prefer)
garlic powder
Place about 1/8” of olive oil in a frying pan. Heat on Med. high till hot. Carefully add cleaned whole green beans, they will spit and sputter. Sprinkle on Montreal Steak rub and/ or garlic to taste, Add a splash of a red Merlot wine. Immediately cover. Cook for about 15-20 minutes turning them regularly. Browning just short of burning is ideal.  You may add sliced mushrooms
These are great cold or hot.
Play around with your seasoning, try different combinations to find just the right one for you.
Thanks and enjoy!

What to do with your Basil! Pesto or Tomato Basil Salsa?

Yesterday in our produce box we received beautiful basil and tomatoes!  Here is a recipe for you!!

Here is a Pesto Recipe pulled from  This Pesto recipe had the most stars and looks delicious!

3 cups packed fresh basil
4 cloves garlic
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup oil – extra virgin olive oil would be great!!
1/4 cup pine nuts (toast them for a toasty flavor)
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley (optional)

Combine and Enjoy!


Second option – This is the one I am going to do Tomato Basil Salsa

1/4 cup chopped basil
2 cups chopped peeled tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped onion
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Salt and Pepper to taste

Made this recipe this afternoon – I doubled it (the amount of basil we received in our share equals about 1 cup of finely chopped packed basil).  It was delicious – we poured it over pasta!!  Yum