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Tomato soup, salad and dessert

At this time of the year when fresh tomatoes are plentiful, I so look forward to making my sister LaDonna’s Tomato Dill Soup with chewy dumplings. I make this soup all year long using my home canned tomatoes but there is something to be said about the flavor using fresh picked tomatoes from our plants. It’s a savory soup with a hint of dill-rich in flavor.

Put simply, it’s fabulous!

LaDonna’s Dill Tomato Soup

Serving size: 10

1 quart fresh tomatoes

3 tablespoons sugar

4 tablespoons butter

1 medium onion, chopped

2 tablespoons parsley

1/2 teaspoon dill weed

Salt and pepper, to taste


3 eggs

1/3 cup milk

2 tablespoons sour cream

Enough flour to make a stiff dough

Saute’ the onion and butter until golden. Add tomatoes, sugar, parsley, dill weed, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Simmer about half an hour. Add four cups of water and chicken bouillion (one teaspoon per cup) or a good four teaspoons. Bring to boil again. Mix four tablespoons of flour and four cups milk. (I like to heat the milk in the microwave first). Add hot milk to the tomato mixture. Bring to a boil again covered this time adding dumplings. Drop into the slowly boiling soup, cover and simmer on low for about another half an hour.

■ Pam’s Asian Sesame Pasta Salad

Serving size: 12

1 pound cooked bow tie pasta

2 tablespoons olive oil

6 tablespoons sesame oil

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

6 tablespoons honey or maple syrup

1/2 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup roasted slivered almonds

2 tablespoons sesame seeds

1/2 cup chopped green onion

1-2 cups fresh pea pods

Cook pasta; drain. Saute the olive oil, sesame oil and crushed red pepper flakes for 2 minutes. Add honey or maple syrup, soy sauce, roasted slivered almonds, sesame seeds, chopped green onion and pea pods to the oil mixture. Pour over cooked noodles; mix well. Serve warm or cold.

■ Monster Cookies

(These are nutritious. A crazy recipe as these cookies don’t have flour in them.)

2 cups sugar

2 cups brown sugar

1 cup butter, not margarine, must be real butter

6 eggs

1 1/2 cups peanut butter

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

9 cups oatmeal

12 ounce bag of mini M&M’s

(found in the baking section)

4 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup real chocolate chips (can add more)

Mix all ingredients together by hand. I like to cream the sugars, eggs, peanut butter, vanilla, soda and salt with my mixer and then stir in the M&M’s, chocolate chips and oatmeal. Drop on lightly greased cookie sheets and bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until lightly browned on top.

GARY’S TIP: For a fluffier omelet, add a pinch of cornstarch before beating.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Thoughtfulness is to friendship as sunshine is to a garden.