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Watching my mom and grandmother expertly apply lipstick with or without a mirror enveloped in a mist of Chanel 22 planted the seed of my obsession with everything pretty. I have worked as a model and pro. make-up artist for approximately 13 years now and I still moonlight as one when I am not busy running my Hypnotherapy and Life Coaching practice and being a mom to an awesome teenager and a wife to a talented man.

Thursday, February 17, 2011


I love to cook. And boy this girl can cook! Last night's rainy weather put us in soup mode here at the Wink! household. What can be better on a cold rainy day than some rich warm soup? I can tell you this is not a light or diet conscious meal but rich comfort food that is allowed on rainy days such as yesterday. I will share with you my "Tuscan Soup" recipe. It's my own improvised version of the Zuppa Toscana you might be familiar from Olive Garden. I usually cook by sight so bear with me on my directions as I am not used to writing down my recipes and giving instructions on how to cook something. :)

Ready to cook? ;)

Ingredients for Wink! Tuscan Soup
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup cubed skinless boneless chicken breast
  • 1/2 cup chopped thick sliced bacon (I use Farmer John Premium Thick Cut)
  • 1 cup mild Italian sausage (removed from casing and crumbled)
  • 1/2 cup chopped (not diced) white onion
  • 2 golden potatoes scrubbed and chopped into small cubes
  • 1 cup farfalle (butterfly/bow tie shaped) pasta (I like to use Barilla brand)
  • 2 cups chopped kale
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • salt and pepper
Over medium heat, place a large pot with water and cubed chicken. Cover and meanwhile begin to fry chopped bacon. When bacon is done, drain and discard fat and set bacon on a paper lined plate to remove extra fat.

In another pot, cook ground sausage until fully done. Drain and put in the same plate as cooked bacon.
You will probably see white foam in your chicken stock. Remove and discard as much as you can with a spoon just so your broth is not filled with foam. Some will remain, trust me, and that's ok. Add your potato and pasta. 

In a pot, place your butter and onions, cook these until they soften, but not to where they are caramelized please. Remove from heat.
Now you may add to your soup the sausage, bacon, and onions complete with the butter they were cooked in. Bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to a simmer and add cream, salt and pepper to taste and kale. Cover and let cook for approximately 5 minutes. Serve and enjoy!
Easy huh?
Now doesn't this look delicious?
Definitely 5 winks!
Here's a tip: In order to save time on clean-up I like to clean my counters and wash the dishes I've used as I go along and wait for some things to cook. 
Hope you enjoyed this recipe.
Now have yourself a big bowl and
Buon Appetito!

Stay Pretty! ;)

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