Visitors from the North

August 11, 2010

I’m trying to keep up with my weekend, so pardon me if my posts are a little out of order.  😀  Still getting used to blogging!

I practice voice for the second time this summer yesterday and it went pretty well.  I am really going to miss my voice teacher this year.  Her name is Ida and she and her husband had to move to Malibu to get new jobs.  😦  She was is the best.  But I do think I sing better when I hear her voice.  😉  I have auditions for which choir I will be in on August 24th, so I really need to start practicing every day until then to get my voice back into shape.  I am thinking I will sing my french piece I learned last semester, “Plaisir D’amore,” by Jean Paul Martini, for my audition.

But what I really wanted to talk about is how my aunt and uncle came to visit last week on their way from Denver, CO to Michigan.  The night they got in I decided to cook them one of Tyler’s favorite meals, Tortellini Primevera.  I found this recipe from Eating Well ( magazine.  I changed a few of the ingredients because I did not have any tarragon, dill, chives, or fontina cheese (they recommended you can also use parmesan, but I am a fan of parmesan).   In place of tarragon, I used basil, which turned out to be delicious!  The first time I made it I used shredded mozzorella cheese (my favorite) and when my aunt and uncle came last week, I used that fresh mozzorella that you saw in my Wisconsin Travels post!  This was such a hit that my uncle used a spatula to scrap the last of it out of the pan!  And since one of my co-workers is begging me to put recipes up, I will start with this one!  Unfortunately I do not have a picture of the delicious meal because it was just too yummy that I fogot!

Tortellini Primavera

( 16 oz. bag of frozen tortellini)

1 16 oz. bag of frozen mixed vegetables

1 vegan bouillan cube dissolved in 2 cups of water or a 14 oz. can of vegetable broth

2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon of olive oil

3+ cloves of garlic, mince (I love garlic!)

1-2 cups of shredded mozzorella cheese (If you prefer less cheese, use just 1 cup)

1/2-1 tablespoon of dried basil or dried oregano (I used 1/2 tablespoon of dried oregano the first time and 1 tablespoon of dried basil this time, and both were great!)

1/8 tablespoon of salt

Put a large pot of water on to boil.  Whisk the broth and flour in a small bowl.  Heat the oil in a large skillet and add the garlic, stirring until fragrant and starting to brown (it took me about a minute).  Add the broth mixture to the pan and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally for about 3 minutes.  Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the mozzarella cheese and basil (or oregano).

Add the vegetables and the tortellini to the boiling water and lower to a simmer.  Cook for about 3-5 minutes until the vegetables and tortellini are tender, then drain and add the the pan of sauce.  Coat the vegetables and tortellini with the sauce.  Be ready to serve because I have found it can get cold quickly!

After dinner, we all delighted in one of my favorite brownie recipes (I had baked them earlier that day).

This is a recipe I got from Amber(  The only thing I did different from her recipe was I used half milk chocolate chips/half mini Reese’s peanut butter chips.

Amber’s Deep Chocolate Brownies

( cup of canola oil)

1/2 cup of maple syrup

1/2 cup of sugar

1/4 cup of light vanilla soymilk

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup of whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup cocoa powder

1 tsp of baking powder

1/2 tsp of salt

1/2 cup of milk chocolate chips

1/2 cup of mini Reese’s chips

1/2 cup of chopped walnuts

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, whisk together the oil, syrup, sugar, soymilk, and vanilla.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the wheat flour, all-purpose flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt until blended.  Fold the dry mixture into the wet mixture and mix until just blended.  Mix in the milk chocolate chips, Reese’s mini cups, and chopped walnuts.  Pour the mixture into a greased 8×8 pan and stick in the oven.  Bake for 30-35 minutes (30 minutes usually works perfect for me).  Make sure you let them cool before cutting them (I’ve run into the problem of them breaking up if I cut them too soon).

On to Friday!  Every Friday my co-worker, Karen, and I order lunch.  This week I suggested we check out what fresh items Whole Foods had.  This is what she found!

We split a fresh salad made with romaine, dried cranberries, mandarin oranges, and pecans (it also had onions on it, which I picked off-not a fan of onions-and came with a sweet dressing).  We also split a Grilled Veggie and Hummus wrap.  It was wonderful!  It had hummus, grilled red peppers, eggplant, mushrooms (which I decided to pick off), and onions.  No, I did not pick off the onions.  There is something about grilled onions that I do enjoy.  🙂

Oh!  I must not forget about the amazing chips she picked up!  I have searched the Whole Foods website and can’t find exactly what they are!  Karen said they are wheat chips, but they look like veggie chips to me!  Either way, they were so addicting!  Made for a great Friday.


2 Responses to “Visitors from the North”

  1. Amber Shea @Almost Vegan said

    For the tortellini recipe, it’s probably 1 can of veg broth or TWO cups of water w/bouillon. 1 standard size can of broth contains about 2 cups (16 oz.) of liquid. :]

    Great idea with the Reese’s chips! I’m so glad you love the brownies and have gotten lots of use out of the recipe.

    Oh my god, those fried pita chips from Whole Foods are dangerously good. They always have some sitting out for sampling near the salad bar, and it’s hard to walk away!

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