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Tomato Basil Soup September 18, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — misscilicia @ 7:00 pm
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Tomato Basil Soup

I have a surplus of tomatoes and basil in my garden; thus the inspiration for this soup. All modesty aside, this is one of the best soups I’ve ever made. The “secret ingredient “ is the cashew cream, so be sure to make it! It’s really easy.

The ingredients are very approximate, just use what you have on hand.


½ cup cashews. Soak these at least 2 hours, or overnight.

6-8  Tomatoes 

2-3 cups veggie broth, or water. If you use water, add vegetable bouillon paste to the soup while it’s cooking.

Basil, to taste

½ small white onion

1-3 cloves garlic

¼ nutritional yeast

Salt, pepper, oregano, thyme, to taste


Dice the tomatoes, garlic and onion, and sauté in sauce pan. Add spices.  When the veggies are tender, add broth or water with the bouillon. Blend the cashews in Vitamix or blender, add the yeast and leave in the vitamix or blender.  Add the cooked veggies to the Vitamix and blend until desired thickness. I like to leave in a few small chunks of tomatoes.



Pickled Cherry Tomatoes

I have some friends who have a very large organic garden. They always have more produce than they can use. So they call me and I come and pick. I find homes for all I can’t use.

This year I have a big enough kitchen to can in (I bought a house!), so I’ve been canning dill pickles, bread and butter pickles, and tomatoes. I had picked soooo many cherry tomatoes and was wondering what to do with them.  Since I’ve been making pickles, I wondered if I could can them. So, of course, I did.

Pickled cherry tomatoes are tasty as part of a cheese plate, used as a garnish and added to pasta salads. The brine would be good  in a bloody Mary. Pickled cherry tomatoes can be a garnish for a martini, or just eat them straight from the jar.

This recipe makes about 7 pints. I canned them, but you can just refrigerate them if desired.  Be sure to run a skewer through the cherry tomatoes after rinsing and removing the stem.



3 cups cider vinegar

2 cups water

¼ cup kosher salt

¼ cup sugar

6 cups cherry tomatoes, skewered

¼ white onion, chopped

14 cloves garlic, peeled

½ teaspoon–ish:

Black peppercorns

Mustard seeds

Red pepper flakes

¼ lemon, thinly sliced and chopped



Mix the first 4 ingredients in a pan and bring to a slow simmer, stirring to dissolve the salt and sugar.

Prepare tomatoes while the brine heats up. (If you are going to can this, sterilize and heat jars and lids. Start water heating in the hot water bather.)

Add a bit of the last list of ingredients to the bottom of each jar, fill jar with the tomatoes, then add the brine to almost the top of jar. Screw on lid, and either place in hot water bather at full boil for 15 minutes, or refrigerate. Let the flavors develop for at least 4 weeks, if canned.



Fresh Salsa August 27, 2021

Filed under: Cooking — misscilicia @ 7:56 pm
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It’s that time of year again–salsa making time! I have a garden and grow all my salsa making ingredients, but if you don’t have a garden, just head down to your local farmer’s market or store. Why make your own fresh salsa? Because summer just isn’t complete with it!


These are very approximate. Just throw in what you have on hand, and need to use up.

4-6 tomatoes, your favorite knid. I like romas

2-6 cloves garlic, depending on your love of it.

1 small red onion

Chiles, to taste. I like it hot, so I add 4 or 5 jalapenos

A big squirt or two of fresh lemon or lime

Cilantro, to taste

Fresh oregano, to taste

Cumin, to taste 


If you have a food processor, just throw it all in and blend until you have your desired consistency. You can also chop everything by hand.

That’s it! Just be sure to have some good corn chips handy so you can sample right away! 



Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp June 13, 2021

We have lots of strawberries growing! I’ve made some freezer jam from them, and frozen a few bags. Then my son asked me to make a strawberry rhubarb pie, so I purchased some rhubarb from a local farmer’s market and cooked up this crisp. This is easier and faster than making a pie shell, and I think tastier. 



  • 2 cups thinly sliced strawberries
  • 2 cups diced rhubarb
  • ⅓ cup turbinado sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt


  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • 7 tablespoons marg or butter
  • ¼ cup oats


Preheat oven to 375. Toss the filling ingredients and pour into a lightly oiled baking pan, Mix the crisp ingredients, cutting in the marg with a knife or pastry cutter. Drop evenly onto the fruit mix by spoonful. Sprikle oats over the top.

Bake about 30-40 minutes, until topping is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Let cool about 10-15 minutes, and serve. Top with vanilla ice cream, if desired.




I used to get this dish at one of my favorite restaurants, but then the pandemic hit, and we all had to stay home. So, I decided to make it myself. I was pleasantly surprised how fast this is to put together, plus it’s pretty darn tasty.

The first time I made it, I thought that red sauce was the same thing as salsa. Found out the hard way that it does not duplicate the flavor I was after. It’s much better with the red sauce, believe me! Here is my version of this.

Makes 4 wraps.


  • About 10 – 12 veggie buffalo wings. I like Morning Star brand
  • Thinly sliced red onion, to taste
  • Jalapeno, diced, to taste
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • About 1 cup lettuce, shredded
  • 4 whole wheat tortillas, warmed
  • Bob’s red sauce, to taste
  • Daiya ranch dressing


Heat small frying pan with a bit of oil, add the wings, onion and jalapeno. Saute about 5 minutes, until the wings are browned and the onions and jalapeno are crispy. Add a couple of tablespoon of red sauce and stir to coat.

Plate the warmed tortillas, fill with the wings, add tomatoes and lettuce. Top with the ranch and more red sauce, if desired. Fold and serve.



Golden Milk May 23, 2021

Filed under: Cooking,guides — misscilicia @ 10:25 pm
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Golden Milk

For those of you not familiar with golden milk, it’s a tasty way to get some great spices in our diets. There are several ways to make it; here’s my methed.

Dice about ½ cup of fresh ginger root and ½ turmeric root and put into pot with enough water to cover it and a bit more

Now break up 3-4 cinnamon sticks and add to pot. Lastly add about a tablespoon of whole black peppercorns.

Put on burner and bring to a simmer for 20-30 minutes. Let cool and strain into a container. Add honey or agave to taste.

Add about 2 cups of plant milk and stir. Refrigerate.

And that’s it! It just takes a few minutes, and it makes your home smell amazing.



Fruit Water May 7, 2021

Filed under: guides,Homes — misscilicia @ 8:21 pm
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This is as simple as can be, and pretty tasty too. 


½ of a pineapple, peels removed and cut in small chunks.

½ of a watermelon, with the rind cut off and cut into small chunks.

Several mint leaves

Place in a jar and refrigerate. This is very refreshing on a hot day. And you can eat the fruit too, of course.


Garbanzo Bean Burgers April 2, 2021

Filed under: Cooking,guides — misscilicia @ 6:55 pm
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I love the flavor of garbanzo beans, and also how quickly they cook up. I had some left over from another meal and came up with this recipe to use them up. Of course, you can always use canned beans. I won’t tell.

This comes together in just a few minutes for a quick and yummy meal.


2 cups cooked garbanzo beans with liquid

½ carrot, grated

1 stalk broccoli, diced

Diced red onion to taste, diced

1-2 cloves garlic, diced

¼ cup rolled oats

Salt, pepper, oregano, to taste


Burger toppings of your choice, such as tomato slices, avocado lettuce, with a pickle (if desired) on the side.


Mix all including the garbanzo bean liquid in food processor and blend until smooth.

Put cornmeal in shallow bowl.

Form garbanzo mix into patties and dip into cornmeal on each side. Fry in a heated pan on each side until nicely browned. Top with cheese if desired.



Toasted Candied Pecans August 27, 2020


A friend of mine gave me some toasted candied pecans that she had made, and the recipe.They were so good I had to make some I, of course, changed it up some. These just take a few minutes to make and they are pretty delicious.


½ cup margarine (I like avo marg)

1 teaspoon vanilla

Spices to taste: I used about a teaspoon of each, except for the salt and cayenne. I used ½ teaspoon of those.






¼ cup sweetener. I used maple syrup powder this time just because I just got some, but next time I’m going to use agave syrup.




Melt butter in a saucepan, and then add all the ingredients. Stir well. Add the pecans and stir again. Heat oven to 300, and put the nuts on a baking tray on parchment paper. Bake for about 10 minutes. Remove and let cool.


That’s it.






Savory Bowl August 10, 2020

Filed under: Cooking,guides — misscilicia @ 8:00 pm
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My daughter has been making bowls, and they sound so good that I thought I’d give it a try. The idea is to use beans, any type. (My daughter and I love black beans so that was our choice.), The second component is a grain. She likes quinoa, and I like barley the best. Use your own favorite bean and grain. The third is veggies. We both like them roasted. 



1 cup beans, cooked or canned.

Nutritional yeast to taste. This adds a cheesy yummy flavor.

Cumin, oregano, garlic, black pepper and salt to taste.


1 cup grain, cooked with veggie broth.

Spices such as rosemary, thyme and garlic to taste.


11/2  cup chopped veggies, your choice. I like red onions, squash, red bell peppers,broccoli and tomatoes.

Spices and fresh herbs of your choice.


Sauce of your choice. I like peanut sauce or salsa.



I always cook my beans from scratch . If you forget to soak them overnight, bring them to a boil, and let them cook off. This is the same as soaking them overnight. Bring to a boil again for a few hours. I always make extra, and either use them within a few days, or freeze them. Of course, you can always use canned beans,


Bring 1 cup water to boil, add ½ cup grain and seasonings, and cook until tender, about 30-40 minutes.


While your grain is cooking, toss veggies on a baking sheet in olive or avocado oil with seasonings of your choice and roast at 400 for about 10 minutes.


Put the beans on one side of a casserole dish, the grain on the other side, and heap the veggies in the middle. Reheat at 35- for about 10 minutes. Pull out and top with sauce.