5-Minute Blender Marinara

Every Friday is pizza night around these parts. We like to offer a variety of sauces and toppings and let everyone design their own pie. When I headed into the pantry for a jar of my favorite marinara sauce, I found the cupboard bare. Yikes! The ovens were hot, the family was hungry and I had to do something-fast. Desperation […]

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Strawberry Freezer Jam

Have you read the children’s book, The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear?  The sneaky fox goes to great lengths to get just half of a juicy strawberry and I certainly don’t blame him.  A fresh-picked berry is nature’s perfect treat. They are unique in taste and structure, being the only fruit to bear its […]

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Blender Salsa

   This recipe was born in a moment of desperation when I realized that someone had eaten the very last of the store-bought salsa and that someone else (it may have been the same person) forgot to add salsa to the grocery list when they took the last jar from the pantry. The result was disastrous: not a drop of salsa in the house.  I am unable to live without salsa. It is my condiment of choice and I slather it liberally on dishes throught the day. A breakfast of eggs gets a nice dollop, while a lunch of nachos or beans and rice is never complete without either a scoop of pico de gallo or bottled tomato goodness. Dinner at our house often involves a tortilla, some fixins’ and, of course, salsa.  This recipe turned out to be the solution I didn’t know I had been looking for. Our favorite commercial brands were a touch too spicy for my youngest and we were going through it quickly.  Inexpensive, completely customizable and fast, this blender salsa pleases the whole crowd. In the event that I find myself with only an empty jar, a refill is only five minutes away.  Blender Salsa Yields 1 quart 1 large or 2 small cloves of garlic 2 scallions or a handful of chives A small handful cilantro, with the bottom of the stems trimmed off 1/2-1 Jalapeno, seeded (leave seeds in for more spice) […]

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Tzatziki and Other Pita Fillings

With all that pocket bread on hand, the options for lunches, lunchboxes and quick dinners are almost endless.  Here are a few of my favorite ways to eat a pita: Torn into triangles with hummus or tzatziki sauce. Stuffed with grilled veggies and a few pickles. brushed with butter and sprinkled with Parmesan, parsley and salt then baked into pita […]

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Marinated Tomatoes

I’m always happy to eat a tomato adorned with only a little salt.  However, the family is likely to grumble a little if all that shows up on the dinner table are sliced tomatoes and a salt!  Here’s a quick little recipe that dresses them up enough to be served as a meal.  Marinated tomatoes are great over simple grilled chicken or a slice of cheese toast!  Toss in some small fresh mozzarella balls or diced mozzarella for a delicious salad, or serve them over a scrambled or fried egg.  Plus I’ve included a little French trick to make it all look a little fancier!   Marinated Tomatoes 2 cups sliced and/or cherry tomatoes 1 Tbsp delicious olive oil (you really want a flavorful oil here) 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed 5 large basil leaves, cut chiffonade (read on for instructions!) 1-2 tsp salt 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper A drizzle of balsamic vinegar, optional (at our house we add this at the table allowing those who don’t want it to go without) Combine all ingredients and gently toss.  Allow to marinate while you prepare whatever you’re serving them with. How-to cut a chiffonade: First, start with 5 or so leaves of basil: Stack them with the largest on the bottom and the smallest on top: Roll it up: Then using a sharp knife (this one is my favorite for small tasks), slice the roll thinly: The perfect way to […]

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Beginning with Basil

Welcome to Modern Day Ma!  I’m glad you’re here!  I hope you find what you’re looking for among the recipes, ideas, and gardening tips, or just some good reading material for your day! Summer’s bounty is upon us, and it seems a terrible time to start a blog, but it’s also the perfect time!  There is produce in every corner […]

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