Monthly Archives: May 2016

Gazpacho with Crab

Original Post Jun 4, 2013

Sunday, Wegmans was sampling Gazpacho with Crab. It was delicious. But I wasn’t going to pay their prices for a little cup of it when I knew, for a fraction of the price, I could make it myself.

When I got home, I poured through all my cookbooks looking for a recipe for this Spanish classic. Can you believe, everything I found was two pages long? Really! Who has the patience to prepare a recipe that is over half a page. Not me!

I got the gist of the recipe. Tomatoes, spices, cucumber, garlic. Easy. Here’s what I came up with. The crab is a little Maryland addition. It adds some protein. Good stuff!

Gazpacho with Crab
2-10 ounce cans Rotel tomatoes with lime and cilantro
1 can of water
8 oz crab meat
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
Dash of cayenne
Juice of 1 lime
Top with fresh cilantro

1. Blend the tomatoes with the water, garlic, lime and cayenne. If you aren’t clear on what I mean by one can of water, I mean dump the tomatoes into the blender and then fill the empty can with water and dump that in next.
2, Add the cucumber and crab.
3. Chill for at least 30 minutes.
4. Serve topped with chopped cilantro, parsley or even chopped peppers.

Not even close to two pages!

I ended up with four servings of gazpacho. Let’s calculate the cost per serving together! Two cans of Rotel were $3.38. Eight ounces of crab was $5. One cuke was $1. One lime was .20. Total cost per serving is about $2.40. I didn’t count the garlic, pepper or cilantro. That’s a pretty good price for a hearty soup. I hope you’ll consider adding it to your summer party menu.


Mango Avocado Salad

masLooking for a salad to serve at your barbecue this weekend? If you can find ripe avocado and mango, this is a good one!

Mango Avocado Salad
1 ripe mango, cut into cubes
1 ripe avocado, also cut into cubes
2 green onions, chopped with about a half an inch of the green part, too
1/3 cup chopped red pepper
1/2 cup raspberries
Juice of 1/4 lime

  1. Combine all the ingredients except for the lime juice.
  2. Squeeze the lime juice on the salad and gently stir to coat everything.
  3. Eat up!

After something like 15 straight days of measurable rain in Central Maryland, the sun has decided to shine again. It was actually 90 yesterday! My garden is starting to sprout which is making me very happy!

I’m looking forward to a pleasant quiet weekend at home with my family. I do believe that the smoker will be put into action – it better because there is a lot of stuff to smoke!!!

Wondering what that cute little plate is? It’s a 4″ Areca Palm leaf plate! How cool is that?!? If you don’t serve greasy food on it, it’s reusable a few times and 100% compostable. You can find this and many other items on

Enjoy your weekend, and please take a moment to pause and remember those who served our country and died, especially those who suffered for years after their service was complete. Keep them, as well as their families in your prayers.

Roasted Strawberry Jam

rsjI am not a canner or jelly maker. I have many other Laura Ingalls like qualities. I can actually sew and have made many quilts by hand (no machine). I can bake some very good bread. I can kind of knit. Throw me in the big woods or on the prairie and I feel pretty confident I would be just fine.

Because I am not a jelly maker, I was pretty excited to see that one can make something like jam by simply roasting strawberries. The roasting process releases the juices from the fruit which then caramelize. I decided to give it a whirl.

Roasted Strawberry Jam
2 lbs strawberries, washed, hulled, and quartered
2/3 white sugar
1 tsp vanilla

  1. After you have washed, hulled, and quartered the strawberries, toss them with the sugar and vanilla in a nice big bowl.
  2. Spread the mixture out on a sheet pan – I sprayed mine with a bit of pan spray. Try to make just one layer.
  3. Bake at 350 in 30 minute increments, stirring and monitoring the “juice” level. Your jam will be done when the juices start to thicken. It took mine about two hours.

Be very careful during the last half hour to monitor your jam closely. It will not take much for the jam to burn. I am not 100% sure that mine wasn’t slightly burned.

The verdict on this? Good! Surprisingly, everyone liked it. I really was surprised since they tend to like treats a little more on the sweet side. The flavor was much more intense than a raw strawberry, or regular strawberry jam. It was very deep and tasted like a rich red wine. It made me feel like I wish I had added a little balsamic vinegar or even some rosemary to compliment the unique flavor.

I served my jam on the little dessert cups that my mom used when I was a kid and we had Strawberry Shortcake. I don’t know that I would serve this to really young kids unless they are open to trying new things. I will definitely make this again, and look forward to trying it with some extra ingredients.


Easiest Hummus Ever

eheHave you tried all the different flavors of Triscuits? I have and I love them! My new favorite is Mediterranean Style Olive. It has nudged Parmesan Garlic to second place. For now at least.

When I grabbed the box at lunchtime yesterday, I noticed a suggestion to serve them with Hummus. That seemed like a very good idea to me, but, alas, I had no Hummus. HOWEVER…thanks to a Well Stocked Pantry, I had everything I needed to make my own Hummus in no time at all!

Easiest Hummus Ever
1 can of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 cloves garlic
2-3 tbsp olive oil

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a high power blender and, starting on low, slowly increase speed until Hummus is desired consistency.

I’ve had a tendency in the past to make my Hummus too runny. I resisted the temptation to add more oil or water to make the blending easier. Instead, I used the handy dandy tamper that came with my blender. That made the process very easy. And my end product was very good if I do say so myself. I had it right away on my yummy Triscuits. There was enough to share with My Faithful Assistant, and to have later with some Olive Tapenade. Delicious!

I know this is not The Traditional Hummus recipe than Hummus purists may like, but it is very tasty and my people like it this way. It’s made with ingredients that many people already have in their homes.

You can jazz up your Hummus by adding tons of other ingredients like Cayenne to make it spicy, spinach to make it green, roasted tomatoes or red peppers, olives, etc. Let your imagination go wild!