Accidental Tomato Soup with Goat Cheese
January 15, 2012

Who knew that a total cooking disaster could turn into the best homemade soup I have ever had?  In order to understand what I am talking about, I’ll have to take you back a few days to a comical sequence of events.

For Christmas, my mother bought me a beautiful Italian cookbook, and I was dying to give the recipes a try.  My first choice was a seemingly easy “Potato and Garlic Pizza.”  Obviously if the pizza had turned out as great as I had planned, this post would be about the pizza – not tomato soup.

The pizza was supposed to be completely from scratch, including the sauce.  Understand that I am a cooking novice and trust cookbooks religiously.  So when it called for seven liquefied tomatoes for the pizza sauce, I did as I was instructed.  Instead of a perfectly uniform pizza sauce, I was left with a blender full of watery tomato juice, essentially.  In the end, I realized a little too late that the recipe’s measurements were embarrassingly incorrect.

Look at all that tomato puree that was going to go to waste!

This story has a happy ending though, I promise.  As I scoured the internet for creative ways to use blended tomatoes, I realized I was over-thinking it – just make tomato soup, duh!  Sometimes impromptu cooking turns out better than the meals followed strictly by the book.  Having learned that lesson the hard way, I decided to make the soup using only my brain and my taste buds.  I must say that the tomato soup was easily the best I have ever had.

The soup I accidentally created taught me a couple of lessons:

  1. Even the biggest cooking flops may have a silver lining.
  2. Tomato soup is actually unbelievably easy to make.
  3.  Don’t cry over . . . too many liquefied tomatoes.

HOW TO MAKE ACCIDENTAL TOMATO SOUP: (and no, there are no exact measurement)

  • several tomatoes, halved
  • a little milk
  • fresh basil, or dry as an alternative
  • fresh cilantro, or dry
  • onion
  • a couple of garlic cloves
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • Italian seasoning, optional
  • chicken broth
  • goat cheese

1: Place several tomato halves, I recommend 5, in a baking dish.  Pour olive over the tops and bake on 450 degrees for 10 minutes or so.  Meanwhile saute chopped onion, minced garlic cloves, basil, and cilantro.

2: Liquify a chopped onion medley and tomatoes in a blender.

3. Pour mixture into pot and add one can chicken broth and a little water (if can is from concentrate).  As you can see, I actually strained a can of chicken noodle soup and only used the broth.  Bring to boil, then turn down to medium low heat.

Call it creative or call it a little ghetto.

4: Add some milk, around a half of a cup, or if you have half & half that works just as well.  Then add goat cheese – as much as you desire.  Stir, stir, stir.

Crumbled goat cheese is the key to this recipe.

5: Use salt and pepper and Italian seasoning for enhanced flavor; serve!


**There are no exact measurements because the best recipes come from the heart.  Make this your own by adding or substituting whatever you desire!**


Delicious Lime Flounder In Only Two Steps
September 25, 2011

My second College Kid Cuisine recipe is ridiculously simple but will impress friends/roommates/parents (when they visit).  My goal with these recipes is to teach other college students that healthy eating does not require extensive cooking skills.

Health benefits of flounder:

  • Great source of protein.
  • Very lean meat; in other words flounder has a very small percentage of fat.
  • Contains Omega 3 fatty acids (small amount compared to other fish).
  • If you don’t like fish, it doesn’t have a “fishy” flavor.
  • Slices of frozen flounder*
  • Lime juice
  • Salt & Pepper
  1. Place frozen flounder slices on cookie sheet.  Sprinkle ample lime juice, salt, and pepper on top of each slice.
  2. Bake in oven at 400F for 9-11 minutes.  Let cool & serve!

*Note that flounder shrinks significantly once you bake it.  I usually make 2-3 slices per person.
My lime flounder recipe is served best with a side of pasta & vegetables of your choice!

Introducing College Kid Cuisine: EASY ALFREDO
September 15, 2011

Myth: All college students eat ramen noodles or frozen dinners for a typical meal.

Fact: Some college students do not realize what a balanced, healthy meal is consisted of.

Several of my fellow college friends are in the habit of warming up pizza or loading up on starchy carbs when dinnertime rolls around.  While laziness may partially be to blame, many college students simply do not know how to cook anything besides easy mac.

I have always had a passion for healthy, high quality food.  Just because I moved to college didn’t mean I was going to neglect my appreciation for good meals.  With a tight budget and only mediocre cooking skills, I have quickly discovered several easy meals that do not require the sacrifice of quality.  As I begin to post my many creations, I hope that other college students can learn that balanced meals are much easier than they have perceived.

Here is my very first College Kid Cuisine recipe!  Portion sizes will usually be for one or two people.


1/3 box tri-colored fettuccine
2-3 fresh cloves of garlic, minced OR 1 tsp garlic powder
1 cup milk, I recommend 2%
2 tbsp cream cheese
1 tbsp butter or margarine
1 chopped tomato, I like Roma
A few frozen pre-grilled chicken slices
Salt & pepper
Italian seasoning
Parmesan cheese

1. In medium or large pot, boil water; add noodles and a couple of dashes salt.  Boil noodles for 10 minutes.

2. While noodles are boiling, melt butter in a mid-sized pan on medium heat.  After butter has melted, add minced garlic/garlic powder and stir.

3. Put cream cheese and milk in pan.  Stir until cheese is completely melted and there are no clumps.

4. Microwave chicken for 3-4 minutes.  Add chicken and also tomato to sauce.

5. Turn heat to medium low.  Add several dashes of salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.  Taste it to see if you need to add more!

6. By now the noodles need to be drained.  Afterward, mix in the noodles with the sauce.

Eat with parmesan on top!

Extraordinary Desserts: A Must Visit
July 3, 2011

Dessert.  The favorite part of the meal for many people, yet also the course of the meal most often skipped.  However, a San Diego restaurant once featured on the Food Network will make you skip straight to the best part – sweets!  Extraordinary Desserts has two locations in San Diego, Union Street and Fifth Avenue.  If you are planning to be in Southern California, plan on making a special trip to this unforgettable destination.

Surprisingly, there is no actual menu for the desserts.  To order, the customer must view the desserts behind a glass case and tell the waiter which treat they have chosen.  Then the waiter retrieves the given dessert and takes it to the kitchen to be further decorated with freshly made glazes.

If you have any interest at all in teas, consider ordering a pot at Extraordinary Desserts.  You can choose from a wide range of flavors such as “Marco Polo” and “109 Blossoms.”  No matter if you prefer black, green, or herbal, they have a fresh, delightful flavor for all.

Don’t be intimidated by the restaurant’s modern yet elegant appearance.  The prices range from 3.95 for a small dessert to 9.95 for a dessert the size of a full meal.  The cakes, tarts, scones, pies, etc. are well worth every penny, seeing how a scone at Starbucks is the same price for a freshly made scone at Extraordinary Desserts.  The quality of all the food and drink is a true steal when you compare it to the fresh, elaborate desserts you will receive in return.

The elaborately decorated treats along with the fun atmosphere create a must-visit restaurant.  Be prepared to eat and drink your weight in fruity, fresh desserts that will leave you asking for more!