friendly reminder to
  • support boys who like minestrone soup!
  • boys who like cold soup!
  • boys who like carrots in their soup!
  • boys who use can soups instead of homemade!
  • boys who put meat in their veggie soups!

Here’s what’s cooking: Minestrone Soup. 

Because it’s winter and even though it hasn’t been particularly cold in my neck of the woods, it gets dark early and the wind still blows a big chill.

So, soup.

Minestrone is a wondrous choice for so many reasons. It’s thick and filling, colorful and inviting, nourishing and nurturing.

Also, I can make it ahead, which I am doing today, for my New Year’s Eve dinner.

And it tastes so, so wonderful.                                                                                                   

Minestrone Soup

3-4 ounces beef bacon** 

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion

2 medium cloves garlic

3 carrots, sliced ½-inch thick

3 stalks celery, sliced ½-inch thick

2 Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into bite size chunks

1 small zucchini or yellow squash, cut into bite size chunks

1 cup frozen peas

1 cup frozen corn kernels

1 cup cut up green string beans 

28-ounce can Italian style tomatoes, including juices

8 cups stock (beef, chicken or vegetable) or water

3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

2-3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

1 teaspoon dried oregano (or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano)

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

15-ounce can white beans, rinsed and drained

½ cup elbow macaroni

Parmesan cheese, optional**

If you include bacon, place it in a soup pot over low-medium heat and cook for 5-6 minutes or until crispy. Remove the meat and set aside. Drain most of the fat. Add the olive oil. Raise the heat to medium. Add the onion and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic, carrots, celery, potatoes, zucchini, peas, corn and string beans and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the bacon pieces, if used, tomatoes, stock, parsley, basil, oregano and salt and pepper to taste. Cover the pan partially and simmer for 30 minutes. Add the beans and macaroni and cook for about 10 minutes or until pasta is tender.

Makes 8 servings

** If you make the soup without bacon, serve it sprinkled with Parmesan cheese. 


So… Lil Miss @simplyitzel thought she could bring her southern ass to New York and stay warm without a jacket on lol. After she was done doin’ her thang earlier we linked up and went to a few of my fave spots here in NYC, showed her around a lil’ bit. We went to Sky Rink and I regret it ‘cause I knew damn well I couldn’t skate but it was mad fun. I don’t appreciate you laughin’ and shit, short ass lol. 

We at the restaurant where I work now, my fave spot out of all NYC. I made Chicken Minestrone Soup and Tomato and Herbed Ricotta Bruschetta. Boss ain’ mind sine she owed me one from spillin’ eggs on the Jay’s mane. Smh. I ain’t gone let baby girl freeze to death so I’m out.. Yall enjoy yall evenin’ haha.


Why I Love The Old Spaghetti Factory: A bucket list restaurant

The Old Spaghetti Factory (TOSF) is next to one of my favourite bars, Bier Markt, on The Esplanade. The restaurant is in an old Blacksmith Shop dating back to 1898. It was turned into the TOSF in 1971 and is known for its amazing food and décor. 

Stained Glass Paradise

TOSF decor is truly a major highlight in the venue. You can eat your meal in a streetcar, if you desire, an antique elevator or surrounded by a century old carousel. The venue has stained glass from Europe featured in numerous fixtures including its chandeliers. It also has high ceilings and gas lamps, giving it a museum or antique shop feel.  

Happy National Spaghetti Day

I love mushrooms as much as I love a good egg, so the Spaghetti and Mushroom Tarragon Sauce, with Minestrone Soup and a Coffee (or with a salad and a tea) for only $13.50 is my favourite meal. My dad, as I remember, always ordered the Goat Cheese Agnolotti. 

However, the most unique thing they have is its Pot-Pourri Spaghetti, which is a pasta sampler. You can get a portion of the Rich Meat, Mushroom Tarragon and Clam sauce to sample out!

So if you want an interesting dining experience, go down to The Esplanade have some dinner in a carousel or streetcar and fall in love with The Old Spaghetti Factory.


for those of you who don’t know I am currently in college. I have two classes back to back a few days of the week and I’ve been working on a hearty soup recipe to keep in a thermos to eat between classes.

1 can of vegetable soup
1 can of beans of your choosing
1 cup of pasta of your choosing
Your choice of seasonings

First get a microwave container that can hold about 6 to 8 cups of fluid. You don’t want stuff to boil over in the microwave it’s such a mess. Then, put your pasta in and set the microwave to whatever time the box says. After it’s some cooking strain the liquid from your can of beans and put the beans in. Next, add the soup to the container. Lastly, add the seasonings to the container. Once you finish all that plop it in the microwave and cook it twice at 4 minutes each.

It’s really good and I highly recommend. Very filling and it costs about 5 bucks to make.

Safe and Unsafe Food List

Safe Beverages:
-black coffee
-diet soda
-half/half tea

Safe Breakfast:
-toast with only light jelly
-low-fat vanilla yogurt

Safe Lunch/Dinner:
-proportioned turkey, chicken, and fish (not fried)
-salad w/ light italian dressing
-minestrone or broccoli soup
-cheese sticks
-light (of half-size) sandwiches

Unsafe Beverages:
-sugary coffees
-non-diet soda

Unsafe Breakfast:
-doughnuts, pancakes, waffles, biscuits
-sugary cereal

Unsafe Lunch/Dinner:
-red meats
-potatoes (fries, mashed, baked)
-fried meat of any kind
-grilled cheese
-Ramen Noodles
-chips and dip
-all desserts
-pies, cookies, cakes
-all breads (except for wheat bread used proportionally for safe foods)
-all Mexican and Italian dishes
-mozzerella sticks
-condiments (dressings, butter, ect…)

I have gained so much lately and I know I am over 140 now. It has to stop. I started laxatives again and I haven’t taken my medication in quite some time. I am depressed and can’t handle how much I weigh anymore. I tried to be positive about it and look on the bright side. Like, “oh wow so curvy and sexy!” But really I am just fat with tons of cellulite and stretch marks on my thighs and butt. I get physically sick looking at my naked self in the mirror and it really is a shame. Something has to change and it starts now. I have to clean up my diet.

As it becomes colder, we long for something warm to eat. My daughter has started to bring hot soup for lunch since last week. Today I prepare minestrone soup on a thermos bottle. Today’s bento is consisting of hamburg steaks (salisbury steaks), carottes râpées, thick omelette, cherry tomato, orange and grape.

So frustrated. When I am at uni my brother goes into my room and takes my food. Today I noticed he’s taken a snack sized bag of Butterkist Sweet popcorn and a cereal bar, and the day before he ate near enough the whole bag of my jelly babies and left me with 4 from a whole bag, my last snack sized Milkybar and two cereal bars and he’s eaten one of my minestrone cuppa soups, a yogurt and a handful of my grapes, drank half my tub of Options hot chocolate too in the past week or so. I know it sounds stupid but these are my safe foods that I’ve bought with my own money and he’s taking them from my bedroom and eating them and he’s taken my phone charger wire too and he broke my last one but whenever I say anything to him, he’s goes mad at me. 😓

Gastronomic Differences in the Italian Regions

When it comes to cooking, pasta in its different shapes and forms is the adhesive that unifies Italy - but there are great regional differences. Only a few dishes are considered ‘national dishes’; each region has its own typical food, cooking methods, and recipes, as well as dialects. This is due to centuries of small city states before the country, at least on paper, fairly recently was “united”. The Unified Kingdom of Italy only happened in 1861. As a result, Italy is all about regional food. To experience the best of Italian cuisine, one should try typical dishes in their home region. There are some trends that allow the division of Italy into 3 general areas, coinciding with the approximate geographical division into North, Center, and South.

North: Gastronomic tradition here revolves around hearty food, hot soups, minestrone, vegetables like radicchio. The Northern tradition is based on dishes richer in fat, more of cold weather and mountain foods. Cheese, truffles, apples, polenta, risotto, mushrooms, speck, butter, game, gnocchi, and Germanic influences with buckwheat and potatoes. Example: Pizzoccheri, short tagliatelle made with 80% buckwheat flour and 20% wheat flour, cooked along with Swiss chard or Savoy cabbage and cubed potatoes, layered with cheese, and dressed with garlic and sage that are lightly fried in butter. 

Center: The Center is renowned for being the area of heavy-bodied foods: Pecorini (cheeses from sheep’s milk), Scamorze (cow’s milk cheeses similar to Mozzarella), Insaccati (sausages), and Sottoli (pickles/preserves). Umbria is famous for truffles and mushrooms. Some special pastas here include: paste fresche, maccheroni, and spaghetti alla chitarra, often with sauces containing meat and game. The meat of choice in this area is pork. 

South: Southern food is typical Mediterranean cuisine. A lot of fish; shellfish on pastas or pizzas. Pizza in Naples it’s relatively thick by Italian standards. Mozzarella and other dairy products are specialties here. A lot of herbs and spices are used, seasonings like basil, oregano, citrus, red pepper. tomato-based sauces. Mozzarella di Bufala Campana is the pride of the South. All cooking is done with olive oil while in the North, butter is often used.

Recipe of the Day: Giada’s Winter Minestrone
Giada’s warming minestrone soup is a weeknight dream. In addition to using whole cannellini beans, simmering pureed beans with beef broth brings a rich creaminess to the soup. Adding a frozen Parmesan rind to the broth lends a salty, buttery flavor to the soup.