Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Easy alfredo

"A jar of Alfredo sauce gets an added kick with cayenne pepper, Romano cheese, and extra cream. Served with red bell peppers, shrimp, and penne pasta, this is one rich dish!"

NOTE:  you can omit the shrimp and cayenne pepper if you do not like these ingredients and it is still fab!
12 ounces penne pasta
1/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 pound portobello mushrooms, diced
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 (15 ounce) jar Alfredo sauce
1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
1/2 cup cream
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more to
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup chopped parsley 
I also add a jar of drained and chopped artichoke hearts with the mushrooms.

1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain. 
2. Meanwhile, melt butter together with the olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in onion, and cook until softened and translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir in garlic, red pepper, and mushroom; cook over medium-high heat until soft, about 2 minutes more. 
3. Stir in the shrimp, and cook until firm and pink, then pour in Alfredo sauce, Romano cheese, and cream; bring to a simmer stirring constantly until thickened, about 5 minutes. Season with cayenne, salt, and pepper to taste. Stir drained pasta into the sauce, and serve sprinkled with chopped parsley.

Caesar lettuce wraps

Submitted by M.Puffpaff. Call me with questions!

Shrimp or Chicken caesar lettuce wraps


  • 2 hearts romaine lettuce
  • 1 pound jumbo fully cooked shrimp, from the seafood counter in market
  • rotisserie chicken, available in many markets
  • 4 heaping tablespoons reduced fat mayonnaise
  • clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 teaspoon anchovy paste, optional (But it tastes better with it in. If you think you don't like anchovies, try them in this sauce. They just taste salty and yummy!)
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, a few handfuls
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon coarse black pepper, eyeball the amount in the palm of your hand: 1 teaspoon is equal to about 1/3 of a palm full
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, pour to the count of 3.
  • Optional... tortillas.  Put all ingredients in and turn it into a wrap! YUM!


Cut bottoms off the romaine and cut the heads in half lengthwise. Wash lettuce and separate the leaves. Let it dry in the dish draining rack while you prepare the rest of the menu.
Remove the tails from the shrimp and place the shrimp in a bowl or, pack for travel, if this is a picnic meal.
To remove the chicken meat from the chicken, cut the chicken breasts off first. Cut the legs and thighs off using kitchen scissors to help you. Slice the meat up on an angle. Arrange on a plate or in a plastic container.
Place mayonnaise, garlic, lemon, anchovy paste, cheese, Worcestershire and pepper into the blender and turn it on. Stream the extra-virgin olive oil into the dressing through center of the lid. When the oil is combined, remove the thick dressing with a spatula to a bowl or a portable plastic container.
Place lettuce on a serving platter or pack in large plastic bag or container to travel.
To assemble, spread dressing onto a lettuce leaf. Fill leaf with a large shrimp or sliced cold chicken, like a lettuce taco, and eat!
To pack for picnic, take the romaine hearts in plastic food storage bags. Pack the shrimp and cut chicken in separate bags and pack dressing in small plastic container.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Peanut Butter Popcorn

Recipe by Stephanie Hill from "dessert night"

(Disclaimer: can be highly addictive and will cause weight gain if taken every day in large quantities over the course of a month or more)

1/2 C uncooked popcorn
1/2 C light corn syrup
1/2 C sugar
1/2 C peanut butter

cook the 1/2 C uncooked popcorn in hot air popping machine and sift through for old maids

heat 1/2 C light corn syrup and 1/2 C sugar to boiling. Reduce heat and melt in 1/2 C Peanut Butter.  Stir in with popcorn.

Fruit Pizza

Recipe provided by Katie Frantz on "dessert night"

1/4 C margarine, softened
1 egg
3/4 C sugar
mix together, then add:

1 1/3 C flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar

mix together then press in a greased 13 or 14 in pizza pan

bake at 350 for 8-12 min. Remove from pan and cool completely


8 oz cream cheese
1/2 C sugar
2 T pineapple juice

spread over cooled cookie and add favorite fruit
examples may be Strawberries, Raspberries, Blueberries, Kiwi, Mandarine oranges, Grapes, Pineapple, Mangos, Peaches, and Apples, etc.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Chocolate Cake (Really, Really Rich and Delicious)

(I took the picture from the internet so don't mind that bottle of wine in the background)
3/4 cup dutch cocoa powder plus extra for dusting the pan
1/2 cup boiling water
2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped (for reference a regular sized Hershey's bar is 2.55 oz)
2 cups flour
2 cups confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon salt
5 eggs (at room temperature)
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter

3/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup light corn syrup
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

To Make
     Adjust oven rack to lower middle position and heat oven to 350.  Grease the bundt pan and dust with cocoa powder.  In small bowl pour boiling water over chopped chocolate and whisk until smooth.  Let cool to room temperature.  Which cocoa, flour, confectioners sugar and salt in large bowl.  Beat eggs and vanilla in separate bowl.  With an electric mixer on med-high speed, beat granulated sugar, brown sugar and butter until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes).  On low speed add egg mixture until combined (about 30 seconds).  Add chocolate mixture (about 30 seconds).  Beat in flour mixture until just combined (about 30 seconds).  
     Scrape batter into prepared pan, smooth batter and bake until edges are beginning to pull away from side of pan.  This should be about 45 minutes (I wouldn't do less unless you know you have an oven that bakes things too fast).  Cool upright in pan on wire rack for 1.5 hours.  Then invert onto serving plate and cool completely (at least 2 hours).
     To make the ganache cook the cream, corn syrup and chocolate in small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, until smooth.  Stir in vanilla and set aside until thickened (about 30 min).  Drizzle glaze over cake and let set for 10 min.  Then serve.  Mmmm ...
-Katie Rice

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Raspberry & Bavarian Cream Puff Pastry Doughnuts

Recipe from Monica brought to cooking club on "dessert" night. I got this recipe from this amazing blog called,  http://www.justgetoffyourbuttandbake.com/. You must visit this site, this lady is amazing!!!!

For a direct link to the pastry doughnuts click below...

1 Egg

1 tablespoon water

1 package (17.3 ounces) Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Sheets, thawed

Raspberry jam or Pie filling like Raspberry, Blueberry, Strawberry, etc.

Bavarian Cream

(I used Raspberry filling and Bavarian Cream from the Prepared Pantry)

Turbinado Sugar


1 cup Confectioners Sugar

2 Tablespoons melted butter

1 tsp. Vanilla.

Now add:

*Enough Milk to make it the consistency of glaze that you like.


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Beat the egg and water in a small bowl with a fork. Unfold 1 pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface. Using a round cutter, cut the pastry sheet into 9 (3 inch) circles. Repeat with the remaining pastry sheet. (Don’t waste the scraps – re-roll them and cut into as many circles as possible)

Place half of the pastry circles onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Spoon about 1 tsp. each of the berry or jam filling and also the Bavarian Cream. If you are not using the cream, add 2 tsp. of the berry filling instead. Brush the edges of the pastry circles with the egg wash. Place the remaining pastry circles over the filling. Press the edges firmly to seal. (I crimped my edges with a fork) Using a sharp knife or a pair of kitchen shears, cut a small slit in the top of each filled pastry.

Bake for 15 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown on the top and the bottoms. Let the pastries cool slightly and drizzle confectioners sugar glaze over the top, or simply shake confectioners sugar over the tops.

*You could be creative and add just about anything to the inside of these pastry filled doughnuts!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Nanaimo Bars

Brought to you by Ashley Michaelis during the international food night. (I didn't use a double boiler, and they turned out great)

Bottom Layer
½ cup              butter (unsalted)
¼ cup              sugar
5 Tbsp.            cocoa
1                      egg
1 ¼ cups          graham wafer crumbs
½ cup              almonds
(finely chopped)
1 cup               coconut

Melt first 3 ingredients in top of double boiler. Add egg and stir to cook and thicken. Remove from heat. Stir in crumbs, coconut, and nuts. Press firmly into an ungreased 8" x 8" pan.

Middle Layer
½ cup              butter (unsalted)
3 Tbsp.            cream
(liquid whipping cream)
2 Tbsp.            vanilla custard powder
2 cups              icing sugar

Cream butter, cream, custard powder, and icing sugar together well. Beat until light. Spread over bottom layer. Chill to set.

Top Layer
4 squares         semi-sweet chocolate (1 oz. each)
2 Tbsp.            butter

Melt chocolate and butter over low heat. Cool. Once cool, but still liquid, pour over second layer and chill in refrigerator.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Creamy Spinach Ravioli

Brought to you by Stephanie Hill at the "go to recipe" cooking club night.

1 package (8 ounces) mushrooms. sliced
1/2 C chopped onion
1/2 C diced red bell pepper
18-24 oz cheese ravioli
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1/4 tsp pepper
3 oz cream cheese
1/3 C evaporated milk
5 oz frozen chopped spinach, thawed
Parmesan cheese, grated (optional)

1. Cut vegetables
2. Cook Ravioli according to package directions.  Drain and return to pot; cover and keep warm.
3. Meanwhile, heat large skillet slightly sprayed with cooking oil over medium heat.  Add your mushrooms, onion, bell pepper, pressed garlic, and pepper.  Cook and stir 3-4 min or until vegetables are tender and all liquid is absorbed.
4. Reduce heat to low; add cream cheese and evaporated milk.  Stir until cream cheese is melted and sauce is smooth.  Stir in spinach.  Simmer over low heat 1-2 min or until heated through.  Pour vegetable mixture over ravioli; stir gently.  Top with Parmesan cheese.  Serve immediately. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Famous Peach Cobbler

Recipe provided by Katie Frantz, from cooking club's "go to" recipe night.

1 C. flour
1 C. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 C. milk
2 tsp. baking powder
1 cube of butter or 1/2 C. margarine
1 Qt. bottled peaches (with juice)  or 2 cans of "no sugar added" peaches with juice

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Place butter in 9x13 pan and place in oven until butter is melted.
3. Mix all ingredients, except the bottled fruit, in a medium bowl.
4. Place batter over melted butter. Pour fruit (including the juice) over batter. DO NOT STIR IN FRUIT.
5. Bake for 40 min until golden brown. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or evaporated milk

Chicken Tortilla Soup

From Ashley Cuoio, brought to cooking club on "your favorite go-to recipe" night.


3 cans chicken broth
1 can beef broth
2 cans tomato soup
2 cans Rotel tomatoes
1 chopped onion
2 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
1/2 c. fresh cilantro
1 T chili powder (you can add a bit more or less with the spices)
1 T cumin
1 can black beans, drained
1 can corn, drained
1 can garbanzo beans, drained


Place all ingredients into a large pot.  Bring to a boil; turn down heat and simmer for at least one hour.  Serve with shredded cheese, sour cream, and tortilla chips on top.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Middle eastern dips and persian flat bread

From Barbara Nielson for international food night. All recipes originally from Middle Eastern Cooking by Rose Dosti, HP Books, 1982, modified by Bishop and his wife over the years!

Baba Ghannouj
1 large eggplant
2 garlic cloves, cut in halves
½ c sesame seed paste (tahini paste)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 t ground cumin
Juice of 2 lemons 1 ½ t oregano
1 drop Dave's Insanity hot sauce
Chopped parsley or pomegranate seeds, if desired
Pierce eggplant and microwave at full power for 5 minutes, until soft. Cool. Peel and put pulp into blender. Add sesame paste, oil, lemon juice, garlic, hot sauce, cumin, oregano, salt and pepper. Process until dip is smooth. Serve garnished with parsley and/or pomegranate seeds. Excellent as a dip or as a sandwich spread. Makes about 2 cups.

1 can garbanzo beans, drained
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 T sesame-seed paste (tahini)
1 T olive oil
2 garlic cloves
1 drop Dave's Insanity hot sauce
juice of 1 lemon
1 t ground coriander
Parsley sprig for garnish
Place garbanzo beans in blender or food processor. Process until smooth. Add tahini, garlic, lemon juice, hot sauce, coriander, salt and pepper. Stir to blend. Make indentation in center and fill with olive oil. Garnish with parsley.

Cucumber-Yogurt Dip
2 garlic cloves
2 cucumbers, peeled, quartered, and sliced
1 t salt
1 t crushed dry mint leaves
2 c plain yogurt
½ t ground cumin
black pepper to taste 1 drop Dave's Insanity sauce
Crush garlic with salt in mortar. Add 1 T yogurt to garlic and blend well. Place remaining yogurt in large bowl. Stir in garlic mixture. Add cucumbers, mint cumin, pepper and hot sauce. Chill and let flavors blend. Use as a sauce on pita sandwiches or as a bread dip.

Persian Flat Bread
¼ c warm water
3 T sugar
1 T dry yeast
3 T butter, melted
2 c warm water
About 5 c flour
1 ½ t salt milk
sesame seeds
Soften yeast in ¼ c warm water in mixing bowl. Add 2 c warm water, sugar, salt, butter and about 3 c flour and beat until smooth. Keep adding flour until the dough is workable. Knead on floured surface until dough is smooth and elastic. Place in a large greased bowl. Turn dough to grease all sides. Cover with dry cloth towel. Let rise in warm place until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Punch down dough. Divide into 4 portions. Shape each into a ball and sprinkle with flour. Cover with cloth and let rest 20 min. Preheat oven to 350F. Roll each dough ball into a 12 x 6 oval. Place on baking sheet. Press ridges into bread with fingers or with a knife or a spoon handle) 1” apart lengthwise on each oval. Brush with milk and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Let rise 15 min. Bake 20-30 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool on wire racks.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms

From Chelsey Stucki. Brought to cooking club on "your favorite go-to recipe" night.  It's so easy and a great, inexpensive appetizer!


-30 mushrooms
-1 pckg. Sausage (the bigger you get, the more meat inside)
-1 8 oz. pckg. cream cheese
-2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
-finely chopped chives (if desired)


-Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
-On the stovetop, cook the sausage, and once sausage is cooked, add cream cheese, mozzarella cheese and chives and heat until everything is mixed
-While cheese/sausage mixture is cooking, remove stems from mushrooms, and then stuff mixture into each mushroom
-Place on a pan and stick them in the oven to cook for 10-15 minutes

Indian Tandoori Chicken

Brought to you by Stephanie Hill during the international food night.  The original name of this dish is butter chicken, but I didn't want you guys to know how I cooked it.  Now you know... It's kindof intimidating at a glance to make because of the different spices, but once you've made it you'll decide it wasn't that bad.  I also think it tastes better the next day because all the spices have a chance to just soak in.  Beware it makes a lot.  We usually eat about 1/3 of it and I freeze the rest in 2 separate portions to eat at another time. Good luck and have fun!

1 C butter
1 onion, minced
1 T minced garlic
1 (15oz) can tomato sauce
3 C heavy cream
2 tsp salt
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp garam masala
1 1/2 lbs skinless boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized chunks
2 T veg oil
2 T tandoori

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Melt a few tablespoons of butter in skillet over medium heat. Stir in onion and garlic, and cook slowly until the onion caramelizes to a dark brown, about 15 min.
3. Meanwhile melt the remaining butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat along with the tomato sauce, heavy cream, salt, cayenne pepper, and garam masala. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low; cover, simmer for 30 min. stirring occasionally. Then stir in caramelized onions.
4. While the sauce is simmering, toss cubed chicken breast with veg oil until coated, then season with tandoori and spread out onto baking sheet.
5. Bake chicken in preheated oven until no longer pink in the center, about 12 min.  Once done, add the chicken to the sauce and simmer for 5 min before serving.

*Don't forget to cook your rice
*I found the tandoori and garam masala at the Co-op (ask they know where it is)
*The Naan bread I found at Winco between the ready to eat fried foods and Asian food aisle

Egg-roll recipe

Brought to international food night by the Puffpaffs. Instead of cutting my own cabbage, I used 2 bags of shredded coleslaw. I also added a package of bean noodles (found in the Asian section) and followed the directions on the package and added the cooked noodles to the mixture. After doing that, I used 60 egg-roll wrappers because I made my egg-rolls smaller. Call me with questions.


Serves 8
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon light-brown sugar
  • 6 cups (48 ounces) vegetable oil
  • 1 napa cabbage (about 2 1/2 pounds), thinly sliced
  • 4 medium carrots, coarsely grated
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 6 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 16 egg-roll wrappers (6 to 7 inches square)
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • bottled sweet-and-sour sauce and spicy mustard, for serving


  1. In a small bowl, combine soy sauce, vinegar, and sugar. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Add cabbage, carrots, garlic, and ginger; season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing, until vegetables are tender, 3 to 5 minutes.
  2. Raise heat to high; add pork and soy mixture. Cook, tossing, until pork is no longer pink and liquid has evaporated, 5 to 7 minutes; mix in scallions. Transfer mixture to a plate to cool. Lay wrappers flat on a work surface, and assemble egg rolls.
  3. In a 5-quart pot, heat remaining oil until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350. Working in batches of 4, and returning oil to 350 for each batch, fry egg rolls until golden, turning occasionally, about 2 minutes; drain on paper towels. Serve with sweet-and-sour sauce and spicy mustard.
  4. To Bake, Not Fry: If you prefer, these egg rolls can be baked. Preheat oven to 400. Lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet; place egg rolls on sheet and brush with cup oil. Bake until golden, about 10 minutes. Serve with sweet-and-sour sauce and spicy mustard. If baking from frozen, bake about 15 minutes.
  5. To Freeze: Prepare egg rolls through step 2; freeze in a single layer until firm, at least 2 hours. Transfer to a resealable plastic bag; freeze up to 3 months. To fry from frozen, increase frying time in step 3 by about 3 minutes per batch.

Stir-Fried Turkey in Lettuce Wraps

From Monica Puffpaff. Brought to cooking club on "your favorite go-to recipe" night. I love this recipe because it is so easy but people think you spent a ton of time on it.
It takes 20 min total to prep and cook this baby!
You can substitute any ground meat -- pork, chicken, or beef -- in this dish.


Serves 4
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 4 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 4 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small jalapeno or serrano chile, seeded and finely chopped (if you leave seeds in the dish can get pretty hot, for less hot remove seeds before chopping)
  • 1 pound ground turkey (93 percent lean)
  • 2 large heads Bibb, Boston, or iceberg lettuce, leaves separated


  1. In a small bowl, combine soy sauce, fish sauce, and sugar and stir until sugar dissolves. Set sauce aside.
  2. Heat a large skillet or wok over high until hot. Add oil and swirl to coat skillet. Add shallot, ginger, garlic, and chile and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add turkey and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until almost cooked through, 5 minutes. Add half the sauce to skillet and stir until meat is cooked through, about 2 minutes. Serve in lettuce leaves with remaining sauce.

    Serve with rice and crispy Asian noodles.