Level: Easy

Total: 1 hr 30 min 

Prep: 20 min

Inactive: 1 hr

Cook: 10 min 

Yield: 12 servings





  1. In a small skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and stir, lightly frying for about a minute, removing before the garlic gets too brown (it can be golden). Pour the garlic and oil into a mixing bowl and allow to cool slightly. 
  2. Add the red and yellow tomatoes, balsamic and basil to the bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to combine, and then taste and add more basil if needed, and more salt if needed (don’t over salt, though!) Cover and refrigerate for an hour or two if you have the time. 
  3. Cut the baguette into diagonal slices to allow for the most surface area possible. Melt 4 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet and grill half the bread on both sides, making sure they’re nice and buttery. Cook until golden brown on both sides. Repeat with the remaining 4 tablespoons butter and the other half of the bread. 
  4. To serve, give the tomato mixture a final stir, and then spoon generously over the slices of bread. Serve on a big platter as a first course or appetizer.

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Southwest Quesadillas

Southwest Quesadillas


One of my favorite appetizers are Southwest Eggrolls, I order them all the time at Chili’s and The Cheesecake Factory.  I also make Southwest Eggrolls at home!

But Southwest Eggrolls are usually fried, that’s what makes them so good!  But anything fried pretty much means high in calories and everything else that aren’t the healthiest things to eat.  So I recently thought why not make Southwest Quesadillas?  After all Quesadillas aren’t deep fried, they’re grilled, so much healthier I think.

I usually make a batch of the Southwest Eggroll filling and using them in quesadillas works as well. Instead of rolling the filling burrito style I grill it on a tortilla, whole wheat of course!

You can make a batch of the filling and use it however you want.  You can freeze the filling and thaw it out when needed.  Or you can roll them into eggrolls and freeze until ready to use. However you choose to use it this Southwest filling is very versatile.  Did I mention it’s a pretty healthy choice too?

Yes the filling is pretty health.  It’s got fiber, protein, and other vitamins, and it’s fairly low in calories and fat.  So go a head make a batch today!

So here’s how to make Southwest Quesadillas!

Southwest Quesadillas

Southwest Eggroll filling click here

Whole Wheat Tortillas (you can use any type of tortilla)

Shredded Cheddar Cheese

Chopped Cilantro

Cooking Spray

Toppings of your choice:  Salsa, Sour Cream, Guacamole, etc.

Spray a skillet with cooking spray.

Heat skillet and place 1 tortilla in it.

Sprinkle shredded cheddar all over the tortilla.

Spoon about 1/2 Cup of Southwest Eggroll filling on HALF the tortilla.

Lift the other half of the tortilla with a spatula and fold it over the filled half.

Press the top half down and cook about 1 minute.

Carefully flip the quesadilla over and cook the other side about 1-2 minutes or until it starts to turn crunchy and cheese is melted.

Remove from heat and cut into 4 triangles.

Serve hot with your favorite toppings.

Southwest Quesadillas
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Round Up of Star Wars Inspired Recipes for Your Event

Round Up of Star Wars Inspired Recipes for Your Event

star wars inspired recipesHear we go again!  Another Star Wars movies was recently released.  Yes Disney’s Han Solo movie is a Star Wars story, meaning it’s not part of any of the Star Wars trilogies.  Instead it’s a stand alone movie designed to enhance or explain the major characters or story lines.  In this case Han Solo’s beginings.  We all wondered about his early years before he joined up with the Rebel Alliance, didn’t we? Regardless if you had the burning desire to learn more about Han or not one thing is certain the new movie has renewed interest on all that is Star Wars.  This means more Star Wars themed parties and events which need of course Star Wars inspired recipes!

So I’ve rounded up some Star Wars inspired recipes for you to try at your next Star Wars movie night or Marathon.  (At our house we have Star Wars Marathons on rainy weekends. )

These Star Wars inspired recipes are super cute and mostly fairly easy to make.  It might just make you the super cool parent of the year when you roll them out at your kid’s Star Wars themed birthday party!

star wars inspired recipesCarbonite Jello

Ok I couldn’t resist so I posted this jello picture I found on Pinterest twice.  After  it is the Han Solo movie and the most memorable thing that ever happened to Mr. Solo, at least in my book, was when he was entombed in carbonite by none other than Darth Vader at the end of episode V The Empire Strikes Back.

I’m sure exactly which site has the recipe for this jello, but do you really need one?  All you need is a box or two of jello and a Han Solo action figure.  Place him at the bottom of the pan and follow the directions on the jello package.  Pour the jello over the man and let it gel!

Personally I’d use green jello simply because I like lime jello.  But we all know carbonite is gray and I don’t think there’s gray jello, maybe you can use blue.  Or if you’re really inspired use Knox unflavored jello, add fruit juice and a few drops of black food coloring, you could possibly end up with gray colored gelatin.  It might work.  But me I’d stick with green lime jello.

star wars inspired recipes

Star Wars Pizza

Another Star Wars inspired recipe that doesn’t really need a recipe.  The picture says it all.  Arrange toppings on a homemade or frozen pizza to make BB8, use a half a pizza crust topped with tomato slices and olives for his head.

Use your imagination and turn pizzas into the Death Star or planets!

If you want to get creative shape the dough into your favorite Star Wars character, Yoda, R2D2, C3pO, Darth Vader, Chewbaca, or whoever.  Remember shape the dough, spread with sauce, sprinkle with cheese, add toppings, and bake.

You can even use refrigerated or frozen pizza dough!



star wars inspired recipesBB8 Quesadilla

Prefer quesadillas to pizza?  Never fear here’s a recipe from Totally the Bomb for this BB8 Quesadilla using cheese and colored cream cheese.

Click here for the recipe![spacer height=”-20px”]






star wars inspired recipesStar Wars Rice Krispy Treats

I think everyone loves rice krispy treats.  They’re a great snack and they’re pretty easy to make.

Here’s the recipe from Mom Endeavors![spacer height=”20px” id=”2″]









star wars inspired recipesstar wars inspired recipesStormtrooper Cupcakes

Here’s the recipe and directions from Yummy Mummy Club! They use food writer pens to make the faces on marshmallows.

If you don’t want to make the cupcakes then just make the marshmallow pops!  It’s made the same way as the cupcake toppers using the food writer pens, just stick them on lollipop sticks instead![spacer height=”-20px”]




star wars inspired recipesPrincess Leia Oreo Truffles

Seriously yummy!

Make these Leia Truffles by The Cookie RookieClick here for the recipe![spacer height=”-20px”]






Princess Leia Cupcakes

Paintbrushes and Popsicles has an awesome recipe for Leia Cupcakes!

Click here for recipe and directions![spacer height=”-20px”]






star wars inspired recipesStar Wars Macaroons

This one’s probably the hardest to make if you’re going to make macaroons at home.  I’m not that patient!  But you can use store bought macaroons.  (I get a box of frozen ones from Sam’s Club or Costco, they’re pretty inexpensive).

If you use store bought macaroons then all you need is a steady hand.  Just pipe the colored icings on the macaroons to make R2Dc, the Death Star, or Chewbacca.


star wars inspired recipesDeath Star Watermelon

Ok this one takes skill, carving skills that is!

Find yourself a round watermelon and get out the carving knives!

This would make an awesome centerpiece for your dessert table![spacer height=”-20px”]





star wars inspired recipesStar Wars Popcorn

Two Sisters Crafting makes this yummy popcorn.  Awesome snack for that Star Wars Movie Marathon!

Click here for the recipe!



star wars inspired recipesLighsaber Pretzel Rods

No Star Wars themed party or movie night would be complete without lightsabers.

How about these Lightsaber Pretzel rods from Two Sisters Crafting?

Hey they’d make awesome party favors if wrapped in clear treat bags!

Click here for recipe!

Need some Star Wars inspired party stationary and decor?  Contact Savvy Nana Crafts, they’ll design the perfect invitations, favor tags, banners, and signs for your Star Wars themed event!


TIE Striker Appetizers

TIE Striker Appetizers

All good things come to an end. We have reached our third and final recipe of our Rogue One: A Star Wars Story trio. Fortunately, we saved the best (at least thematically) for last. Everyone knows that starfighters/vehicles are one of the coolest aspects of the Star Wars Universe. So, for our last recipe, we went all out and created our TIE Striker Appetizers.

The TIE Striker is a streamlined variant of the classic TIE fighter design. It is designed for atmospheric patrols over important Imperial ground-based installations. In Rogue One: A Star Wars Story the TIE Strikers are mainly seen patrolling in the clouds along the beaches of Scarif. Since this particular starfighter was unique to Rogue One, we felt it was due a tribute.

When designing the look of this recipe, we really wanted the appetizers to be mostly visual. Meaning, when you look at them they look like TIE Strikers. We went through a few ideas on how to achieve this but settled on wonton wrappers and Lil Smokies. The result is a sausage and cracker flavor. Even though we used mustard for the detail work, you really could use any condiment like bbq sauce or ketchup.

As we mentioned earlier in the post, this is our last recipe in our Rogue One: A Star Wars Story trio of recipes. Don’t worry if you missed one as we will be re-sharing them in a recipe round-up on Tuesday along with a review of the Blu-ray!

[Sponsored] The Geeks share their 3rd and final Rogue One: A Star Wars Story inspired recipe. They've gone all out with their TIE Striker Appetizers. #StarWarsRecipes #StarWars #Appetizers #GeekyRecipes #GeekyFood #StarWarsParty #PartyIdeas



  • 48 Wonton Wrappers
  • 24 Lil Smokies
  • Yellow Mustard (or another condiment to garnish)


    • Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
    • Cut wonton wrappers using the diagram as a model.


  • Each TIE Striker will be made with 2 of the wrappers.
  • On your foil lined baking sheet, place a wrapper, lightly moisten it with water (not too much) and top it with a seconder wrapper.
  • Place a Lil Smokie on the double layered wrapper and using the scraps from Step One of the wrapper cuts create a “seat belt” for your Lil Smokie.
  • Make sure to moisten the ends of “seat belt” so it will attach.
  • Cook TIE Strikers for 5-7 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Decorate with condiment of choice. We used a ziploc with the tip cut off to line the TIE Striker.
  • Serve.



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Creamy Rustic Tomato Soup

Creamy Rustic Tomato Soup

Nothing beats comfort food on a cold and stormy day.  Whether it’s a snowstorm or rainstorm comfort foods are always welcome.  And what’s the best comfort food on a wet and windy day?  Grilled Cheese sandwiches dipped in a bowl of steaming creamy tomato soup of course!

Dipping a crunchy sandwich dripping with gooey cheese into a hot bowl of creamy tomato soup brings back awesome childhood memories sitting in my grandmother’s kitchen on a winter afternoon.  But for some reason my grandmother always served Campbell’s tomato soup to which she’d heat with milk instead of water.  I guess Filipino grandmas didn’t do homemade tomato soup, but her Arroz Caldo, chicken and rice soup, was always awesome.

I digress, back to tomato soup.  As an adult I still love creamy tomato soup.  When I was a newlywed grilled cheese and canned tomato soup was pretty much all I could make, having had lots of practice during my school days.  Then I suppose you could say my tastes got a bit more sophisticated and I actually learned how to cook.  Homemade tomato soup was something I finally figured out how to make.  It’s actually pretty easy, specially these days when there are immersion blenders and canned fire roasted tomatoes.

These days my love of creamy tomato soup has been passed down to my grandkids.  So I make a big pot of my Creamy Rustic Tomato Soup on stormy days.  Of course there’s grilled cheese for dunking!

Making this soup is very easy, it just takes a bit of time. I use Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes because I just love the Rustic flavors roasted tomatoes have.  To make the soup I sauté chopped onions and garlic, pour in the diced tomatoes, add spices and stock, then simmer for at least an hour.  I add lots of heavy cream, use my immersion blender to purée, then serve.

Ok, so maybe you don’t have an immersion blender, why not??, you really should consider investing in one, it’s a great kitchen small appliance; anyway don’t despair, you can use your blender, a bit messy and you must be very careful, but it’s doable.

Here’s a tip, if you are using a blender, cool the soup to almost room temperature, so you don’t get burned.  Pour  soup in the blender so it doesn’t overflow and leave room for blending space.  You may have to purée your soup in batches.  Return puréed soup to pot and heat before serving.  This is just one reason an immersion blender comes in handy!

So here’s my recipe!

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Creamy Rustic Tomato Soup


3 Cans Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes

1 Small onion finely diced

3 Garlic cloves finely minced

1 Tbl. Olive Oil

1 Tsp. Dried Oregano

1 Tsp. Dried Basil

1 Tsp. Onion Powder

1 Tsp. Garlic Powder

Black Pepper to taste

16 oz.  Chicken Broth

2 Cups Heavy Cream

Fresh Basil or Oregano for garnish (optional)


Heat Olive Oil in a Dutch Oven or large pot.  Sauté onions until they start to turn translucent.

Add Garlic and sauté another minute or two, don’t burn it.

Add spices and mix well.

Add tomatoes and broth.

Bring to a boil.

Turn heat down to low and simmer covered for about 1 hour.

Remove from heat.

Stir in cream.  Mix until well incorporated.

Purée carefully with a hand held immersion blender (if you don’t have one see tip above for using blender)

Blend until the soup is smooth and not lumpy.

If it’s too thick stir in more chicken broth until you get the consistency you want.  You may need to reheat if it gets too cold when  you add broth.

Ladle into bowls and garnish with fresh basil leaf or oregano sprig if desired.

Serve hot.


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Baked Sheep’s Milk Ricotta with Dried Persimmons

Baked Sheep’s Milk Ricotta with Dried Persimmons

Make the most of those end-of-winter persimmons with this creamy baked ricotta.


Spike Gjerde, the James Beard Award–winning chef at restaurants like A Rake’s Progress in Washington, D.C., and Woodberry Kitchen in Baltimore, approaches local sourcing with religious fervor. He forgoes olive oil and lemons, using locally grown and pressed oils and vinegars in their place. His team dries mint, lavender, peaches, and cherries—and even makes garlic powder. He refuses to buy from distributors, even when they buy from local growers, because he wants every penny to go the farm. “A lot of people say, ‘Wow, this is harder than I thought.’ Then they just call [giant distributor] Sysco. But it’s why we’re doing it,” Gjerde says. “Our job is to get more value back to growers.”This recipe, from A Rake’s Progress, is inspired by Gjerde’s relationship with local makers and purveyors. Hoshigaki are Japanese persimmons that have been dried and massaged to evenly distribute their sugars. Gjerde shaves them and scatters them over baked ricotta to make an indulgent but healthy snack.



Active:  15 mins                    Total:  1 hr                 Yield:  6



1 1/2 cups sheep’s milk ricotta cheese
1 large egg
1 teaspoon medium-grind sea salt (such as J.Q. Dickinson)
2 tablespoons Herb Oil
1/4 ounce hoshigaki (Japanese dried persimmons), shaved on a mandoline (about 2 tablespoons)
Grilled bread, for serving



Step 1
Preheat oven to 350°F. Stir together ricotta, egg, and salt in a medium bowl. Transfer ricotta mixture to a small (3-cup) crock or gratin dish. Bake in preheated oven until ricotta mixture is puffed and golden brown in spots, 45 to 50 minutes. Drizzle herb oil over baked ricotta, and top with shaved hoshigaki. Serve hot with grilled bread.


Suggested Pairing:

Creamy, full-bodied Rhône-style white.



Baked Sheep’s Milk Ricotta with Dried Persimmons
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