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  • Writer's pictureRobert Adams

Holiday Cookbook

Updated: Dec 20, 2020

COOKBOOKS ARE BACK IN VOGUE. At least they are in my life. After years of using the magic of Google to find recipes on my laptop, I have decided that my two Daughter-in-laws will get a special gift from me in the form of a printed cookbook from Amazon for Christmas. You know, something you can touch and hold and spill upon. Pretty old-fashioned.

I’m in the process of ordering two copies today of Once Upon a Chef . I have had a bit of a hiccup with Amazon trying to prompt multiple “ship to” addresses. As usual, I attribute this mostly to pilot error.

Jennifer Segal, a former chef, and influencer recently came into my universe. Her weekly posts put her right up there with my tried and true, Ina Garten. I am impressed with Jennifer's approach to recipes expressed very succinctly with her skillful wordsmithing. I will move forward getting to know her, thinking that time will reveal if proof is in the pudding - a pun is fully intended. The above photo is that of her cookbook published in 2018 and the one that I chose for my girls.

I made her Tomato Soup over the weekend and my friend and taste-tester (Nancy), gave it a solid thumbs-up.

Classic Tomato Soup inspired by Jenn Segal


2 TBS Olive Oil

2 TBS Butter

3 cups chopped Onions

2 Crushed cloves of fresh Garlic

¼ cup all-purpose Flour

4-6 cups homemade Chicken Stock

1 - 28 oz. can Crushed Tomatoes

4 fresh Roma Tomatoes (halved and prior roasted at 425F in Olive oil)

1 TBS Brown Sugar

Sprigs of fresh Thyme

Salt & Ground Pepper


In your favorite soup pan melt the butter and add the Olive oil and sauté the onions for five minutes until translucent. Add the garlic cloves and cook for two more minutes and then sprinkle the veggies with the flour. Stir and cook a few minutes; no real browning is allowed.

Add the chicken stock, the two sources of tomatoes, sugar, Thyme. Stir and cover and simmer for forty-five minutes. Use your immersion blender to produce a desired consistency you prefer.

Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with a pad of butter, grated Parmesan, sliced basil, and seasoned croutons.


Jennifer is so pretty. I think she should use her website photo on the cover of her next cookbook.

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