Spaghetti Sauce from Scratch!

It’s finally here!  This is the spaghetti-sauce-from-scratch featured on our Header!  This recipe comes from Ming Thompson, who is a fantastic cook and baker.  The key to this recipe is simply getting good quality fresh veggies – they will make all the difference!

Ingredients (serves 4-5 people)

  • 5 tomatoes
  • 2 bell peppers
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes
  • 1 onion
  • 6-7 cloves of garlic
  • olive oil
  • pasta of choice
  • basil
  • salt and pepper
  • If you so desire: ground meat for meatballs

Here we go!

1. Chop up all your veggies – garlic, onion, bell peppers into pretty small pieces so that they’re bite sized 🙂 Take tomatoes (oooh, notice how I didn’t call tomatoes = veggies!  I know, I’m too good) and slice into 8ths.

2. Start cooking garlic in olive oil.

3. Add in onions until they’re turning ever so slightly brown!

4. Add in bell peppers (ain’t that purdy).

5. Add in tomatoes and grape tomatoes – this is where all your “sauce” will come from.  Leave the whole mixture to boil for a while, until you see the tomato peels start to “roll up” into very sharp, skinny long rolls.


6. Add pasta, add a little basil, and voila!  Homemade pasta sauce.  Use cornstarch if it ain’t saucy enough.

And if you so desire…

Doesn’t this look ever so slightly like Texas?

Texas Roll ‘Em

And to bid you farewell…

A happy basil plant 🙂


Easy Yummy Salad

This salad takes pretty much 15 minutes to make and is delicious, complete with homemade dressing.



  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
  • Jar to shake in!


  • 2 cups romaine lettuce (yes, the picture is inaccurate…)
  • half cuppish raisins (or however much you want, really)
  • 4 apples (or however much you want…)
  • feta cheese! YUM

Here we go!

1. To make dressing, pretty much mix everything together in a bowl and then put it in a jar and SHAKE shake shake!

2. To make salad, simply chop up apples into itty bitty pieces, throw in some feta cheese and raisins, and voila!  Salad…simply delish.

Choppity chop chop!


Healthy Crockpot Chili

We celebrated the arrival of Hurricane Irene this lazy Sunday by cooking some healthy chili for Wen’s church community group.  This chili recipe requires chopping, and opening cans (pretty much).

Here we go!

Materials needed:

  • Crockpot
  • saucepan
  • spatula
  • knife
  • cutting board


Wen loves cumin, and loves to shop at Costco

Note: This chili serves A LOT of people (10-12 people)


  • 1-2 onions
  • 1-2 bell peppers
  • ~5 cloves of garlic
  • 1-2 cans of tomato/tomato puree/sauce
  • 1 can/bag of corn
  • 1-2 cans beans
  • 1-2 cans tomato paste


  • 1 lb sausage
  • 1-2 lbs ground turkey
I. Chop chop choppin

1. Chop bell peppers and place with love and care into crockpot 😀
2. Chop onions give lonely bell peppers some friends
3.  Chop up garlic and add tomatoes/tomato puree/sauce.  Lookin a little more colorful now!
4. Add beans!  Wen’s tip: white and black beans look the prettiest 😉
5. Add corn, and mix around a little bit (let em mingle).  Also add tomato paste.  (By the way, you can really add any of these things in any order)
6. Add seasonings: taco seasoning, cumin and pepper. Tip: you can make your own assortment of chili spices, but Wen finds taco seasoning is the easiest to use! (Less measuring, more smiling!)

7.  Peel the skin off of sausages so that they turn magically into “ground sausage” as opposed to…sausage.  (You may also admire Wen’s beautiful hands here)

8. TADA!  Ground sausage!  Nicely browned - no need to add any oil because sausages are so fatty!  For the health-conscious, this is the only fat in this chili...we promise :D


9. Add the ground turkey into the meat mix and bring to a nice brown as well.

10. Add meat to the chili mix and...

Leave in the Crockpot for 4-6 hours on high, 7-8 hours on low.  Add more seasoning as necessary.

If you are short on time, stir fry all veggies, brown meat, and leave on stove for 30 minutes.

Homemade Tomato Sauce!

Tonight we kick off the start of our cooking adventures with a sneak preview of home made tomato sauce made from scratch, complete with fresh garnish off of Wen’s basil plant.