Category: barefoot contessa

After a LOOOOONG weekend of moving and unpacking, I was tired of eating out and decided to put our new kitchen to the test.  We had some friends come over for dinner Monday night and I wanted to make something hearty, yummy and not so “everyday”.  The hubby of this couple is a Chef so imagine the pressure.  I decided to go with Barefoot Contessa’s Portobello Mushroom Lasagna, a nice French twist on a traditional lasagna.  They brought the caesar salad (with homemade croutons and dressing…see what I mean!) and we added some delicious rolls to finish off the dish.  Served with some wine, it was the perfect meal to rejuvenate this exhausted lady.

I have been in desperate need of some changes to our meals.  We get stuck in a routine and end up having the exact same thing every week.  I spent some time going through cookbooks and came across Barefoot Contessa’s Stewed Lentils and Tomatoes from her cookbook, Barefoot Contessa at Home.  I figured this would be a healthy side dish that the family would all enjoy.  It was delish and a definite comfort dish during this slightly rainy weekend.  Also, it was a fantastic dish for anyone with young children.  It was so easy for Baby Girl to eat and she loved it.  Her lunch was easy the rest of the weekend.  Here is the recipe…

Stewed Lentils and Tomatoes
(Barefoot Contessa at Home, pages 144-145)

2 teaspoons good olive oil
2 cups large-diced yellow onions
2 cups large-diced carrots
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 (28-oz) can whole plum tomatoes
1 cup French green lentils
2 cups chicken stock
2 teaspoons mild curry powder
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground back pepper
1 tablespoon good red wine vinegar

Heat the oil in a large saucepan.  Add the onions and carrots and cook over medium-low heat for 8-10 minutes, until the onions start to brown.  Stir occasionally with a wooden spoon.  Ad the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
Meanwhile, place the canned plus tomatoes, including the juice, in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse several times until the tomatoes are coarsely chopped.  Rinse and pick over the lentils to make sure there are no stones in the package.
Add the tomatoes, lentils, chicken broth, curry powder, thyme, salt and pepper to the pan.  Raise the heat to bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer covered for about 40 minutes, until the lentils are tender.  Check occasionally to be sure the liquid is still simmering.  Remove from the heat and allow the lentils to sit covered for another 10 minutes.  Add the vinegar, season to taste and serve hot.
This cookbook has numerous recipes that I continue to go back to.  I would highly suggest picking it up for your kitchen.  You can find it here.

Favorite meal of the day?  Breakfast/Brunch.  I cannot get enough of it.  I am definitely the mom who throws the “breakfast for dinner” out at least once a week.  I am also the person who loves to throw parties at 11am so that brunch is served (baby showers, wedding showers, Baby Girl’s birthday party, and on and on).  One of my favorite parts of this meal (besides mimosas of course) are the baked goods.  This past Sunday I threw together this Blueberry Crumb Cake, not for breakfast on Sunday…but so we had something yummy for breakfast each morning this week!

And because I have to ask….
I know, I know, this pink circle is getting annoying to you.  I promise it is only for one more day!  Voting ends tomorrow at 5pm pacific!

Even though I am a major chocolate snob, every now and then I find a dessert that does not contain chocolate *gasp* but still indulges my HUGE sweet tooth.  One of my favorites is Barefoot Contessa’s Lemon Yogurt Cake (recipe here).  It is light, moist and extremely easy to make.  I pulled this one out as a part of our Fourth of July celebration and it did not disappoint (as if Barefoot Contessa ever would).