Tag: parmesan cheese

Parmesan Crisps In A Creamy Zucchini Soup

Parmesan Crisps In A Creamy Zucchini Soup

         Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Mama Francesca Cheese. However all opinions and the recipe are 100% my own.

Parmesan crisps in a creamy zucchini soup #mamafrancesca

I never seem to tire of cheese.  The thought of cheese excites me.  It makes me want to plan an entire meal around it or just slice it up with a cracker.  I run the gamut on the types I like and usually will hunt high and low for a specialty cheese.  Come on, does this really need explaining?  My logo to this blog is a little mouse.  That didn’t happen on accident.  I say it loud and proud,  “I’m a cheese girl!”

You can only imagine my utter delight when I happened to come across the premium MF_logo_premcheese_blackMama Francesca Cheese (available in a variety of flavors) at my local Walmart.  I nearly jumped for joy.  I adore parmesan cheese and it can sometimes be a little bit of a pain to find a nice one at an everyday market that’s affordable.  For some reason most people only think of parmesan cheese as a spaghetti topper, and forget to explore all the other wonderful things you can do with it.  I like to mix it into my mashed potatoes or make it into a pesto or encrust my chicken in it and fry it to a crisp, or simply make parmesan crisps out of it for soup or salad.  It doesn’t matter what you do it, as long as you buy it and eat it right away.

Ingredients for parmesan crisps and creamy zucchini soup:

  • 5 – tablespoons Mama Francesca cheese ( I used Perfetto flavor)
  • 1 – tablespoon olive oil 
    LIneup shot Mama Francesca
  • 6 – garlic cloves
  • 1/3 – cup leeks (chopped)
  • 9 – zucchini (chopped in rounds)
  • 1 – tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 – teaspoon chile flakes (the kind you use on pizza)
  • 1 – teaspoons Lawry’s seasoning salt
  • 1/2 – teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 – bay leaf
  • 4 – cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 3/4 – cup 1/2 and 1/2


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees fahrenheit.
  2. Line a cookie sheet with a baking mat.
  3. Pour 1/2 tablespoons of Mama Francesca cheese into little circle on the mat. Make sure they do not touch. parmesan cheese crisps #mamafrancesca
  4. Bake the cheese for 5 to 6 minutes or until golden crisp. baked parmesan cheese #mamafrancesca
  5. Set to the side to cool on baking sheet until ready to use.
  6. In a large pan over a medium flame add in olive oil and allow to get hot.
  7. Add in leeks and garlic and saute for about 2 minutes.
  8. Cut zucchini into rounds. I used a variety of zucchini. colorful variety of zucchini
  9. Then add in zucchini, dried basil, chile flakes, Lawry’s, black pepper, and bay leaf. Mix to combine. Continue to saute for about 5 to 10 minutes, or until the center of the zucchini starts to become translucent.
  10. Pour in the broth and bring to a boil.
  11. Boil the zucchini until fork tender for about 10 to 15 minutes.
  12. Then remove bay leaf from soup.
  13. Working in batches, pour 1/3 of the zucchini soup into a blender with 1/2 and 1/2. Blend until completely smooth/pureed.
  14. Pour smooth/pureed zucchini mixture into a bowl, and continue with the rest of the zucchini soup until all is pureed.
  15. Serve in a bowl hot and top with parmesan crisp and EAT IT!zucchini soup with a parmesan crisp #mamafrancesca
Yukon Potato Gratin with Parmesan-Rosemary Bechamel

Yukon Potato Gratin with Parmesan-Rosemary Bechamel

I got invited to a Thanksgiving cooking class over at the Simple Gourmet in Redondo Beach a few weeks ago, and even though I consider myself a Thanksgiving pro….  I figured “Why not? I might learn a thing or two!”  Guess what, I did.  These ladies cooked traditional dishes with a splash of pizazz.  Here is one of dishes that I couldn’t get enough of….. literally the whole room was fighting for them.

All photos taken by: Nicole Presley

Ingredients for Yukon Potato Gratin with Parmesan-Rosemary Bechamel:

5 to 6 – lbs. yukon gold potatoes, sliced 1/2 -inch thick (with skins still on)

3 – tablespoons butter

3 – tablespoons flour

3 – cups whole milk

1 -tablespoon chopped rosemary

1 – garlic clove, grated

1/2 – cup grated parmesan cheese (plus more for sprinkling on top)

salt and pepper as needed

Place the cut potatoes in a large pot of cold water over high heat.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook for 5 to 10 minutes or until potatoes are just tender. Drain immediately and place in a large bowl.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Heat sauce over medium heat. Add butter. When melted, add the flour. Cook for 1-2 minutes stirring constantly. Whisk in milk and rosemary.  Cook, whisking often, until mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for a couple minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in parmesan.  Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.  Toss the potatoes with the sauce and dump into a 9×13 inch casserole dish.

Sprinkle with a little more parmesan cheese and place into the oven.

 Bake for 15 minutes or until golden.  Remove and let rest 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Disclosure: No compensation was received for this post. All opinions are my own. Recipe by Simple Gourmet.