I am a die-hard Oprah fan. Her show was my after school babysitter, and she was a good friend and ally while growing up. She was, and still very much is, a great sense of comfort to me in my life. Daily I find myself thinking, what would Oprah do? Would she eat this cookie? Yep! Ah man, I feel bad about eating that cookie, what would Oprah do? Meditate about it! We seem to speak the same language, she just gets me. I have discovered along the road of life that people can be classified into one of two categories, an Oprah die hard or a Martha lover. Martha fanatics …gimme a break. She ain’t got nuthin’ on Oprah, and no, I do not care that she went to prison. O will win in a scrap any day of the week.

So imagine my horror when one bright and sunny August afternoon, a week or so after my birthday, I pulled a crisp copy of Martha Stewart Living out of my own mailbox. NO, no, no, no, no. I thought it had to be a mistake, perhaps it’s my neighbors? But low and behold, it had MY name on it. I later find out this was a generous birthday gift from a friend, a Martha loving foe.

All of my friends and family got a good laugh out of that, and two years later (yes, my friend renewed the subscription) the magazine which we will no longer call by name arrives each month, right on schedule-just like she would. I mean, she does put her monthly calendar on page 2 of the magazine. Like we really care when you went horseback riding, or that you were working on core strength on Thursday, “Sightseeing in Miami on the 21st.” Yeah, I bet you mended that sweater to donate it to charity. Liar. Note: All of these were ACTUALLY on her calendar for February 2014.  I know, ridiculous.

So why are we here? Because after two years of cutting and enthusiastically ripping pictures out of the glossy magazine for random craft projects, I do have to give her credit where credit is due. What the MSL magazine lacks in inspirational and thought provoking stories, it makes up for in pretty decent recipes. So here I am world, admitting that I prepared a recipe from an enemy’s publication. And that I took said recipe to a dinner party, and everyone agreed that it was good.


Martha’s Roasted Cherry Tomato Sauce
aka Diablo’s Ketchup


Martha: 1 Pound, 6 ounces cherry tomatoes
Me: One giant container of little red tomatoes from Sam’s Club

Martha: 3 cloves of garlic, smashed
Me: 3 cloves of garlic it is.  Do not use tiny pieces, they burn to ash in Diablos sauce

2014-04-13 16.08.36Martha: ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Me: sometimes ½ cup is too much, you just want to barely cover the tomatoes, so eyeball it

Martha: 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar
Me: I found two tablespoons to not be enough but I like balsamic, so add more if you feel like it needs it

Martha: 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
Me: Add 2 tablespoons dried thyme.  Or, buy fresh and try to find a use for the other 525 tablespoons

Martha: 2 teaspoons packed light-brown sugar
Me: I actually used a tablespoon of honey once, and really liked the flavor, but both ways are good

Martha: 1 teaspoon salt
Me: Salt to taste, and then throw some over your shoulder for protection

2014-04-13 16.56.10Instructions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Mix together tomatoes and garlic in a glass, or nonreactive, 9-by-13 inch baking dish.  Whisk together oil, vinegar, thyme, brown sugar, and salt in bowl.  Pour over tomato mixture.  Bake approximately one hour, until tomatoes have softened and caramelized.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  Sauce can be stored in refrigerator for up to five days.

Serving options:  Serve with warm crusty bread as an appetizer.  Or, toss with your favorite pasta for a flavorful entrée.

Make sure to wrap up all leftovers in tinfoil shaped to look like a swan and donate to local charity of your choice, just like Martha would.  Don’t worry, there are usually no leftovers.