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  • Juanita Weaver-Reiss

Homemade but just like the real deal

I like recipes that are fast and not difficult to make. The other criteria is they need to only have a few ingredients.

Which means I will be in, and then out of the kitchen in no time.

I have done a recipe that is a "copy" of the Five Cheese Ziti Al-Forno from the Olive Garden. (That is a quick and fast recipe. Tasty too.) If you would like to check that one out here is the link

The ones for this blog is the Hearty Pasta Fagoli and the Olive Garden Breadsticks. I did modify the recipe for the soup and made it into a vegetarian variety. If you want the original recipe it is

The bread sticks I did make two different ways.

The first was using a refrigerated biscuit mix. This one did not have the texture of the bread sticks. So I also made the bread sticks from scratch using bread flour.

The finished product for the bread sticks were lovely.

The combination with the Hearty Pasta Fagoli soup was delicious.


Hearty Pasta Fagoli soup


  • 4 cups beef broth

  • 1 can (28 ounce) diced tomatoes

  • 1 jar spaghetti sauce

  • 1 large onion - diced

  • 3 celery ribs - diced

  • 1 bag (12 oz) frozen sliced carrots

  • 2 cans kidney beans drained and rinsed

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 8 ounces uncooked medium pasta shells


  1. Add broth, tomatoes, spaghetti sauce, onions, celery, carrots, beans, oregano.

  2. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 30 minutes. Add pasta; simmer, covered, until pasta is tender, 10-14 minutes.

Bread Sticks


  • 1 1/2 c. warm water

  • 2 Tbsp sugar

  • 1 packet yeast (.75oz - or 1 Tbsp)

  • 2 tsp salt (and a bit extra to sprinkle on top)

  • 2 Tbsp butter (softened)

  • 3 c. bread flour

For the topping:

  • 1/4 c. olive oil

  • 2 tsp garlic powder


  1. In a large bowl, mix the warm water, sugar, and yeast

  2. Let it proof for 10 minutes, and get nice and foamy. Then, mix in the 2 tsp of salt, 2 tbsp of softened butter, and about 3 cups of the flour. Keep adding the remaining flour until you get a nice, soft dough that pulls away from the side of the bowl and isn't too sticky.

Now the dough has to rise for 1 hour

  1. If you have a warm kitchen, you can cover the bowl with a damp towel and leave it on the counter.

  2. After an hour, punch the dough down, and separate it into 14-16 balls.

  3. Roll the balls into "snakes" and place on 2 greased cookie sheets. These now go back to rise for another 15-30 minutes (or until they've doubled in size)

  4. After they rise, melt the 1/4 c. of butter, and mix with the garlic powder. Brush over the unbaked breadsticks. Sprinkle the tops with fine sea salt.

  5. Bake at 400°F, for 12-14 minutes - or until golden brown.

  6. Brush once more with the garlic butter mixture.

Enjoying the food mindfully

With the foods made, it is great to eat it slowly and to savor each bite. Mindful eating is a way to enjoy these foods and the others you eat.



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