T.G.I.F. and Whole Foods Fantasy Foodie Contest

Happy Friday everyone!
Don’t y’all just love Friday? I know that I sure do! Friday is the day that we can all let loose and prepare ourselves for the beautiful weekend ahead. Surely, with spring approaching Friday is getting better and better. I get sooo anxious on Friday at work as I stare out the window, the blazing sun and the warm breeze just calling my name. It doesn’t help that there is a snow cone stand about 2 minutes down the road from my work. So, on Friday you can bet your bottom dollar that I will be getting my banana/coconut shaved ice on immediately after I bolt from the cafe. Anyhow, today I just wanted to share my recipe for a fresh and healthy soup using roasted tomatoes, garlic, red bell pepper, and kale. Now, this is my first time using kale, which I hear is the “new spinach.” I have got to say I discovered this veggie for the first time at Whole Foods and I am in love with it! It will definitely change your life. Speaking of Whole Foods, I also wanted to take this time to tell y’all about a Whole Foods contest that I entered. Of course I follow Whole Foods on Twitter and last night they tweeted about their Foodie Fantasy contest, which is open to all food bloggers. The prize package includes two Berlin to Paris trip packages from Intrepid Travel, one $500 AMEX gift card, and two in-country food producer visits. WOW! I am pretty positive that after reading my food posts that y’all understand my love affair with Whole Foods. Honestly, without Whole Foods, I don’t think my blog would have been possible. I am practically at WF’s everyday, browsing the meat market, seafood department, and fresh produce. WF’s gives me the inspiration that I need to create my own recipes in a flavorful and “wholesome” way. I seriously feel as though they are my other half, or the peanut butter to my jelly. Not to mention a trip to Berlin and Paris would really introduce me to the wide range of cuisines that this world has to offer. I have my passport ready, although I have never traveled abroad. What better way to spend it than beginning my European experience in France, a country known for its culinary genius, serving traditional savory dishes such as coq au vin, and sweet treats such as tarte tatin and don’t forget the chocolate eclair. Heavenly! Also, I am almost positive that the French invented butter. Or…at least with all the butter they use, France should definitely be given some sort of credit. So, I entered the contest and uploaded my 60 second “I am desperate to win this contest” video to Facebook immediately. Voting begins April 6th-13th and I really hope that I can count on y’all to vote for me. I really really believe that I deserve this amazing foodie opportunity to widen my culinary base of knowledge and experience. So, please, please, vote for me and let’s make this happen. By the way, thank you to all my family, friends, and random people that follow my blog. I love each and every one of you. Now, on April 6th get to voting! Go to wholefoodsmarket.com for more details.

Roasted Tomato, Pepper, and Kale Soup


1 1/2 pounds Roma tomatoes, cut in half
1 large red bell pepper, cored and seeded
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and cut in half
5 cloves of garlic, unpeeled
1 Tbs. Italian herb paste
extra virgin olive oil
sea salt
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth (you could also use vegetable broth or water)
1 bunch of kale, roughly chopped
black pepper, to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 375 F.
2. Arrange the tomatoes, red bell pepper, onion, and garlic on a large baking sheet and lightly coat them with olive oil.
3. Give the baking sheet a light showering of salt.
4. Bake for 45 minutes or until the tomatoes begin to collapse, and the onions begin to brown and caramelize.
5. Turn the onions if they get overly dark on the bottom.
6. Check on the garlic as well, once the cloves are golden and oozy inside, pull them from the oven.
7. Peel the garlic, dump all of the roasted vegetables and the Italian herb paste into a large dutch oven or a high-sided soup pot and puree with a hand-held immersion blender. (You can also work in batches and puree the soup in a food processor or a blender).
8. Blend in a cup of the broth and keep adding the remaining broth, 1/2 c. at a time until the soup is to the desired consistency.
9. Turn on the stove burner to medium heat and add the kale to the soup pot.
10. Reduce the heat to low and allow everything to simmer, about 10 minutes, or until the kale is wilted.
11. Use the immersion blender to blend the kale into the soup.
12. Add the black pepper and a little more salt, adjusting to your taste.

Note: You can blend the soup to your desired consistency. I particularly enjoy this soup slightly chunky and textured. But hey, smooth or chunky is your call.


P.S. Here is a clip of my contest video. I am soooo embarrassed right now, haha!


  1. Anonymous says:

    oui oui, i think you may be going to france… let the voting begin…not now, but on april 6th, of course…

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