Saturday, February 19, 2011

tomato and portobello torte + a giveaway!!

We just had a big chili cook-off fundraiser for our school. Since I am on the fundraising committee I have been working like mad on it for about 4 months.

As you might guess it is stressful and a major time commitment. But the money that is raised goes directly to the school to help pay our wonderful teachers.

When you look at it that way, it is definitely worth the sacrifice. :)

Today I am free.

The chili cook-off is over, the boys are with their grandparents and Spencer is at work!

We just ordered several books from and one of the books is The Balanced Plate by Renee Loux.

When you open packages from the mail doesn't it feel like Christmas Morning? :)

There are many delicious sounding recipes in the book, the first one I tried was this:

Tomato and Portobello Torte
with some adaption by me

3 Tbs. olive oil
1 medium sweet onion
2 tsp. aged balsamic vinegar
1 tsp. honey
4 c. chopped baby bello mushrooms
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
2 Tbs. red wine
1 sheet puff pastry
1 tsp. dried oregano or 1 Tbs. fresh oregano
3 tomatoes, sliced 1/4" thick
salt and pepper to taste
fresh basil

Saute onion in olive oil until tender 3 to 4 minutes then add the balsamic vinegar and honey and continue to cook for a few minutes. Add the chopped mushrooms, worcestershire sauce, and red wine. Cook until all veggies are soft and aromatic.

Meanwhile, rub olive oil on 9 inch pie pan and lay one sheet of your puff pastry into the pan tucking into the corners.

When mushroom mixture is done pour out onto puff pastry shell and sprinkle with oregano, salt and pepper. Layer the tomatoes on top. Tuck any excess pastry onto tomatoes or onto itself whichever you prefer. Bake covered at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes, uncover and bake for 20 minutes more.

When it comes out of the oven sprinkle with freshly chopped basil. I also added a dollop of goat cheese. :)


We accidentally ordered two of the cookbooks. So I'm going to give one away in celebration of 1. the conclusion of the chili cook-off, and 2. a free, lazy day at home.

(How To Enter)

Mandatory: you have to leave me a comment about why you want to win, or what your favorite cookbook is, or if you like to get packages in the mail.

(Extra Entries)

One extra entry if you follow my blog and for every way you share about the giveaway. You can blog about it, facebook it or tweet it. Then come back and let me know. Leave a comment each time you do something. :)  The giveaway is closed!!

Giveaway ends February 27 at 8:00 pm central time.

Good Luck.



  1. ohhh, that looks so good!
    well, you know how much i love books and with as many cookbooks as I've got you'd think i'd be a better cook! one of my favorites is Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz.

  2. I LOVE getting packages in the mail...even when I know exactly what it is I still think it is so much fun. I love all my cookbooks but my favorite is the internet :-)

  3. I love any recipe involving puff pastry. This one looks yummy....and your food photos are really great, Amelia.

    A great giveaway! On this cold and wintry day I am in such a need for nourishment for my body, mind and yes, soul. One of my favorite cookbooks is Ina Gartner's Back to Basics - love the simplicity of some of her meals (emphasis on fresh ingredients).

    Hope you're having a happy weekend! xoL.

  4. What a great giveaway! Love cookbooks...have a whole shelf full of them! This one would be perfect...because I also love getting packages in the mail! Yay!
    Have a wonderful day! xxx

  5. This looks delicious. I love cookbooks, can never have too many!

  6. wow Amelia!! This looks so good and its vegetarian!!woohoo! Thanks for sharing, I'm going to look into the book:)

  7. Yeah for you and being alone! Isn't it weird when the house is completely empty and quiet?!

    I'd love to have a new cookbook. :)

  8. Hello, that looks amazing! :) All that fresh basil on top, mmmm.
    So, I want the cookbook because I love cookbooks, and I really don't think you can have too many. :) My FAVORITE cookbook is The New Best Recipe from Cook's Illustrated. It is sooo good and so very fun to read.
    And we alread follow.

  9. Hello! I am always looking for good cookbooks to use! I love trying new recipes! And I too love gettting packages in the mail!

    - Nicole

  10. 1. I LOVE mail parcels!!
    2. I LOVE new cook books!
    3. I am partial to Ina Garten,
    but have never turned away ANY
    cook book, as I'm always looking
    for inspiration!
    4. This torte looks divine.
    5. Thank you for this giveaway!
    6. Happy Weekend!

    xx Suzanne

  11. I definitely like to get packages in the mail. My favorite cookbook right now is the Southern Plate cookbook.