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* Ricotta-Stuffed Potato Boats
* Tomato and Basil Soup
* Marinated Cucumber and Carrot Salad
* Crackers or bread of choice

Ricotta-Stuffed Potato Boats

Makes 4 servings

  4 Idaho potatoes, scrubbed clean and poked a few times on each side 
  with the tines of a fork
  1/4 cup minced onion
  4 cloves garlic, minced
  1/2 pound low-fat ricotta cheese
  1/4 cup low-fat sour cream or plain low-fat yogurt
  1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  1 bell pepper, chopped
  4 teaspoons Parmesan cheese

 1. Preheat the oven to 375 F.

 2. Place the potatoes on the oven rack and bake until fork tender, about 1
 hour. Set aside until they cool to a point where they are easy to handle.

 3. In a small, nonstick skillet, saute the onion with the garlic until
 barely browned.

 4. In a large bowl, combine the onion and garlic with the ricotta, sour
 cream or yogurt, basil, and bell pepper. Stir until blended.

 5. Cut a 1/2-inch slice off one end of each potato. Leaving a 1/2-inch
 wall on the sides and bottoms of the potato, scoop out the flesh. Add the
 potato flesh to the bowl with the other ingredients. Mix well, eliminating
 most of the lumps.

 6. Fill the potato boats with the potato-cheese mixture and place on a
 baking tray or cookie sheet. Top each with 1 teaspoon of the Parmesan
 cheese and bake until the tops are lightly browned, about 15 to 20

 Copyright 1995 Acorn Associates, Ltd.

 Tomato and Basil Soup
 Top Notch Inn, Stowe, Vermont

 Makes 6 servings

  4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  1 large onion, chopped
  1 teaspoon dried thyme
  2 pounds ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  2 tablespoons sugar
  2 cups chicken stock
  1/2 cup tomato paste
  Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  Plain low-fat yogurt (optional)

 1. Heat the oil in a saucepan or stockpot. Add the onion and thyme; saute
 until the onion is soft, but not brown. Add the tomatoes and stir briefly.

 2. Add the flour, and stir for about 3 minutes, or until the flour is
 fully incorporated into the mixture.

 3. Stir in the sugar, chicken stock, and tomato paste. Simmer, partially
 covered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.

 4. Puree the soup mixture in a food processor and return to the pot.
 Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

 5. Just before serving, add the basil. Serve with a dollop of yogurt, if

 Copyright 1995 Acorn Associates, Ltd.

 Marinated Cucumber and Carrot Salad

  4 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
  4 cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced
  1/4 cup chopped pimento
  1/4 cup chopped fresh chives or parsley
  2+1/2 cups water
  1 cup rice or white wine vinegar
  6 tablespoons sugar
  1+1/2 teaspoons salt

 1. In a mixing bowl, combine the carrots, cucumbers, pimento, and chives
 or parsley. Add the water, vinegar, sugar and salt. Stir to mix.

 2. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

 Copyright 1995 Acorn Associates, Ltd.

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