Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Second Cooking Club Meeting

Thank you so very much to everyone who came yesterday to our second cooking club meeting! It was a wonderful success. Thanks to those who brought food for us to eat and a special thanks to Grant Call for his delicious soups and hot fudge sauce and Katie Brazelton for her fruit tart that was not only scrumptious, but also a work of art.

Our next meeting will be Tuesday, January 10, at 10:30 at Lisa Nelson's house. You will once again need your passports for this one!! We are going on a Mediterranean Cruise! We will have food from Greece, Italy, Israel, and Turkey--such a homemade pizza, fresh Greek salad, warm pita bread with tzatziki sauce, Israeli salad, Turkey bean salad, a decadent Italian dessert and Viki's famous Baklava!

Also Denise Bosworth is going to teach us how she makes her very yummy lasagna.

If anyone else has a recipe they would like to share, let me know.

Now--scroll down for all of our wonderful recipes from yesterday. Be sure to click on "older posts" at the bottom of the page so you can get all of them. I have also included several other recipes from club members that were not cooked yesterday but are ones you will definitely want to try!

Delicious Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce

Hot Fudge Sauce
by Grant Call

1 stick butter
1/4 to 1/2 cup cornstarch (depending on desired thickness)
2 heaping tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 tsp salt

Boil the above until smooth and bubbly
Remove from heat and stir in 2 cups of sugar

Add back to heat and then add 2 cups half and half

Stir until it boils well to thicken, but be careful as it will foam and boil over.

Remove from heat and add 1-2 tsp vanilla.
Let cool a little before serving over ice cream, or use as a dip for bananas.
Stores well in fridge for one month.

Tomato Soup

Tomato Soup
By Grant Call

1 quart stewed tomatoes. (Home canned is best, or fresh from the garden, but store bought is okay.

1-2 tsp chicken bouillon
Worcester Sauce--few dashes
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 cup fresh dill (may also use basil if preferred)
crushed red peppers to taste

Place all ingredients in a medium sauce pan. Bring to boil. Add water--about half the volume of the tomatoes.
Use cornstarch to thicken to desired consistency. Bring to boil again and stir until thickened.

Add 1/8 cup sugar if you used fresh tomatoes.
Blend everything together with a submersible blender.
Serve hot, topped with fresh grated parmesan cheese.

Grant's Italian Butternut Squash Soup

Italian Butternut Squash Soup
By Grant Call

1 large butternut squash--cut into pieces, place on microwave safe dish, cover with plastic wrap and cook in microwave on high for ten minutes. Set aside

Boil the following together in enough water to cover the vegetables
1/2 onion, minced
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil (around 20 leaves) May substitute dry basil if needed
1-2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp thyme
1 bell pepper, any color is fine
2 stalks celery (diced)
3 carrots (diced)
4 tomatoes (diced

Meat variations: You may use all or any of the below
Chicken breast (two breasts seared first and set aside)
Chopped pre-cooked sausage (turkey kielbasa is good)
Pepperoni (10-20 slices, chopped into quarters)

Cook the vegetables until al dente
Mash the squash and stir into the soup mixture until blended
Add 1 cup chopped broccoli and the meat.
Cook until broccoli is soft.

Serve with warm bread.
May also add some half and half or Alfredo sauce to make heavier, but of course this isn't as healthy.
Can be made in the crock pot too. Just don't add the broccoli until about 30 minutes before serving.

Luscious Layers Pudding Dessert

Luscious Layers

By Alicia Peterson

1/2 c. margarine or butter

1 c. flour

1 c. chopped nuts (I use pecans)

Mix together until it is like small balls. Press into the bottom of a 9x13 pan and bake at 325 for 25 mins. or until golden brown.

1 c. powdered sugar

1 8oz pkg cream cheese

1 c. cool whip (I use off brand)

Mix together the cream cheese and pwd. sugar. Then fold in cool whip. After "crust" is cool put this layer ontop carefully. If you're not careful the crust will come up as you try to spread this layer on. I usually drop small portions all over the crust and then layer out carefully.

1 8 oz. pkg (or similar size) chocolate pudding

Put this layer ontop of cream cheese layer. (Some recipes call for a small layer of vanilla pudding and a small layer of chocolate pudding, but I just put one bigger layer of chocolate)

Top it off with Cool Whip (or off brand).

Katie's Short Bread Fruit Tart

Mix together:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 sticks butter, softened and sliced
1 tsp vanilla extract.

Soften butter first and then add the flour and sugar. Mix until it forms a ball. Press into tart pan or two pie tins. (May also be used for cookies.)

Bake for ten minutes at 350 degrees. Do not over bake. It will continue cooking after it is removed from the oven.

1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp fresh lemon juice

Spread filling onto cooked crust.
Add fresh fruit to decorate. Be sure to cover the entire top. Do not leave any filling visible.

This glaze will give your fruit tart/pizza a professional look.

Put one jar apricot preserves in a small sauce pan. Bring to boil. Strain to remove fruit lumps. While still hot, apply the glaze over the fruit with a pastry brush.

Keep tart refrigerated until ready to serve.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Quinoa Mango and Black Bean Salad

Quinoa Mango and Black Bean Salad
Contributed by Lori Wagner

Our Best Bites Mango Quinoa Salad
2 cups cooked quinoa at room temperature*
1 14 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 medium to large ripe mango, peeled and diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
6 green onions, thinly sliced
½ c chopped fresh cilantro
Mix together and then add the dressing below.
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1-2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
4 Tbsp red wine vinegar
Add salt and pepper to taste. Chill for at least one hour before serving.
*Quinoa is cooked the same as rice. Add one cup quinoa to two cups water. Bring to boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. For better taste, use chicken or vegetable broth instead of water. Yield, two cups cooked quinoa.

Chocolate Lover's Bundt Cake

Chocolate Lover's Bundt Cake
Contributed by Jenny Farley

1 pkg chocolate cake mix
1 pkg instant chocolate pudding
1 c. sour cream
4 eggs
½ c. water
½ c. oil
1 12 oz pkg chocolate chips
Beat together cake mix, pudding, sour cream, eggs, water and oil for 10 minutes. Stir in chocolate chips. Place in greased bundt pan and bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and garnish with raspberries.

Chocolate Fondue

Chocolate Fondue
Contributed by Allyson Andersen

Melt in double boiler over low heat:
2 Toblerone bars (3 oz. each) Trader Joe's has these for the cheapest everyday price
1/2 cup chocolate chips (dark or milk -- your choice)
5 large marshmallows (cut into smaller pieces) (I often use 1/4 cup small marshmallows or a large spoonful of marshmallow creme)

Once above ingredients are melted add 1/2 cup whipping cream (liquid) and stir until smooth.

Pour into a warmed bowl and serve with 1/2 cup chopped nuts, 1/2 package chopped graham crackers, banana slices, apple slices, strawberries, cubed pound cake or angel food cake, pretzels, and anything else that you would love dipped in chocolate!

A lot of fun -- enjoy!

Dip the marshmallows in the sauce and then roll in the chopped graham crackers to make "mini smores" -- yummy!

Tortilla Soup

Southwest Chicken Soup

(This is my favorite Tortilla Soup)

by Connie Brown

2 T Olive Oil

8 oz Skinned, boneless Chicken

16 oz Chicken Broth

1 can (15 oz) Black Beans

1 can (14 oz) Diced Tomatoes

3-6 inch corn tortillas, halved, stacked & cut into 1/2 inch strips

2 T chopped Cilantro

Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

1/4 C finely diced Onion

1 t Ground Cumin

1/2 t Salt

1/2 T Jalapenos, diced, canned

2 Garlic cloves, minced, or 2 t bottled Minced Garlic

1/2 t Chili Powder

1/8 t Ground Red Pepper

8 oz Frozen Corn

In large soup pan, add olive oil and chicken, stirring frequently for about 4 min until no longer opaque. Stir in onion, garlic, cumin, salt, chili powder, and red pepper and jalapenos.

Cook 1 to 2 minutes until spices are fragrant. Stir in broth, drained and rinsed beans, and diced tomatoes and corn. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 min.

Meanwhile, spread tortilla strips in a single layer on a baking sheet.

Bake for 5 min., stirring once, until crisp and lightly browned. Or use corn chips from the store.

Stir cilantro into soup and ladle soup into bowls.

Top with tortilla strips, avocado and cheese.

Makes 6 servings.

Corn Bread

Golden Sweet Cornbread

by Connie Brown

1 C Whole Wheat Flour

1 C Yellow Cornmeal

2/3 C Evaporated Cane Sugar

1 t Sea Salt

3 1⁄2 t Baking Powder

1 Egg, beaten

1 C Soy Milk

1/3 C Safflower Oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare or grease a 9 inch round or square pan. Combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, salt and baking powder. Stir in egg, milk and oil until well combined . Pour into prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 min. or until tooth pick inserted into center comes out clean... Serves 8-9.

Note: The original recipe came from All Recipes. This is so good, but I made some changes to make it even better by adding in whole wheat flour and cane sugar and soy milk.

Spicy Turkey Meatloaf

Spicy Good Turkey Meatloaf

by Connie Brown

1 Lb Lean Ground Turkey

1 small Onion, chopped

1⁄2 C uncooked Oats

1⁄2 C low-carb BBQ Sauce ( I like the Trader Joe’s Brand)

1 medium Tomato, pureed

1⁄2 tsp Cumin

1 tsp fresh Garlic, minced

1 tsp Black Pepper

2 Egg Whites

1 small can Green Chilies

1 tsp Mexican Seasoning

Non stick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Shape into a loaf and place in loaf pan that has been lightly sprayed with cooking spray. Spread top with BBQ Sauce. Bake for 1 hour. Great for meatballs and turkey burgers too!

Serves 6

1 Serving = 276 Calories , 40 gr Protein, 20 gr carbs, 3.9 grams of fat.

I like to serve this with Mashed Potatoes:

2 C Potatoes, cubed 1⁄4 C plain non-fat Yogurt Pinch of Salt Serves 3-4, 164 Calories per serving.

3 T Smart Balance Buttery Spread 1⁄4 C Skim Milk Pinch of Black Pepper

This makes great leftovers the next day or so.

Chicken Tacos

Spicy Soft Tacos

(This is quick and easy dinner or lunch)

by Connie Brown

2 pre-cooked Chicken Breasts, Cut into 1” cubes Or use 1 pint of home bottled chicken

3/4 C No Sodium added Chicken Broth

2 t Grape Seed Oil, or Olive Oil

1 Red Bell Pepper, seeded and sliced into strips

1 Green Bell Pepper, seeded and sliced into strips

1/2 Large Onion, thinly sliced

1 Clove Garlic, minced

1/2 tsp ground Cumin

1/4 tsp Chili Powder

8 (6”) Low Carb Tortillas Salsa

Place chicken chunks in a small bowl, cover with chicken broth and then set aside in the fridge. In a large pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Saute bell peppers and onions until the onions are clear. Add garlic, cook for 30 seconds. Add the chicken broth, the chicken, stir for 3-4 minutes until the broth evaporates. Add the cumin and chili powder and stir well. Cover and simmer while you warm the tortillas. You can heat them in the oven or the microwave. Fill each taco with the chicken mixture, top with salsa, cheese, lettuce and tomatoes and serve.

Makes 8 tacos. 270 Calories (30 gr of protein, 30 gr Carbs, 4 gr fat)

Spicy Black Beans

My Favorite Spicy Black Beans

by Connie Brown

1-16 oz Can Black Beans, rinsed, drained or 2 C Dry Black Beans, soaked overnight 1 1/3 C V-8 Juice 3-5 C Water

2 t Garlic, minced

1 t Cumin

2T Olive Oil

1 t Salt

2 T Chopped Cilantro

Cook garlic in oil, add cumin, saute 1-2 min. Add beans, juice and salt . Continually stir until heated through. Just before serving stir in the cilantro. If using dry beans that have been soaked overnight, rinse well, add the 3-5 c water, juice, salt and cook in pressure cooker 12 min at the 2nd red ring. These beans can be added to soups, salads, burros or just eaten plain as a side with a meal.

Eclair Cake

Éclair Cake

Contributed by Pawranee Shipley


1 c. water

¼ tsp salt

1 stick butter

4 eggs

1 c. flour

Cream Filling:

2 pkgs. Pudding, any flavor

2 c. cold milk

1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese

12 oz Cool Whip

Bring water to a boil. Add butter. When melted, add salt and flour. Stir until dough leaves sides of pan. Cool slightly. Add eggs, one at a time, and stir. Spread in jellyroll pan. Bake at 400 degrees for 25-35 minutes. Cool and break bubbles with fork. Combine pudding and milk, slowly add cream cheese. Beat till smooth. Spread on dough and cover with Cool Whip. Drizzle with icing.


3 oz semi sweet chocolate chips

1 c powdered sugar

1 T. butter

milk to consistency

Amaranth Chocolate Chip Cookies

Amaranth Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe from Chef

contributed by Connie Brown

1 C Butter, softened or use 1/2 C Butter and 1/2 C Coconut Oil 1 C Brown Sugar 1 C Organic Evaporated Cane Sugar 1 t Salt 2 1/2 C Flour 2CChocolateChips

2 eggs 1 T Vanilla

1 t Baking Soda 1 C Popped Amaranth 1C Toffeepieces(opt)

Cream the butter and sugars until smooth. Add the eggs, vanilla and mix until smooth . Then add the dry ingredients and mix well. Add chocolate chips last and fold into batter. Drop onto a parchment lined cookie sheet and flatten out each cookie with the bottom of a glass.. Bake in a preheated 325 degree oven for 11 min.

Do not over bake! They should be just barely golden brown on the bottom.

Popped Amaranth: Amaranth is a super grain or complete protein. Using a deep pot, heat to medium hot with no oil. Using 1 –2 T of Amaranth at a time, drop onto hot pan and it will “pop” like popcorn. Pour into big bowl and continue until you have about 1 C..

You can do this ahead of time and store in an airtight container. It adds a wonderful nutty flavor to your recipes.