Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Italian Cooking Class/Demonstration

I was unable to stay for the class last night; but heard rave reviews. Mitchell and Calla Rae said everything was delicious and everyone had a fun time. We finally had the gas stove top working which made things run smoother (no blown fuses last night). The take away from the class is that you do not have to cook lasagna noodles before making the lasagna. Lana's tip: put a little sauce in the bottom of the pan, layer your lasagna as you would, let sit in the refrigerator for a couple of hours to allow the noodles to soak up the liquid and bake as usual. No one will be able to tell the difference. I have been doing this for years and it sure makes lasagna easier to work with! Below are the recipes.

Italian Stuffed Bread


1 loaf frozen bread dough
1 egg yolk (save the white)
2 TBLS parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp italian seasoning
8 ounces italian sausage
5 ounces frozen, chopped spinach
4 ounces finely shredded italian blended cheese

Thaw dough and spinach to room temperature.

Remove sausage from casing and cook until crumbly. Drain and discard excess fat. Let sausage cool. Combine sausage, spinach (with water squeezed out) and blended cheese.

Roll dough into 14 x 16 inch rectangle. Combine egg yolk and parmesan and seasoning and spread mixture on dough. Top with sausage mixture leaving 1 inch border. Gently roll dough lengthwise into a pinwheel loaf. Place on large cookie sheet with seam side down. Brush with some egg white. Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 35 minutes. Let sit for 10-15 minutes to let bread firm up before serving.

Marinated Mushrooms

2/3 cup olive oil
1/2 cup wine vinegar
1/2 minced clove of garlic
1 TBLS fresh lemon juice
2 tsps chopped chives
1 tsp tarragon
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
coarsely ground black pepper
2 lbs fresh mushrooms

Clean, stem and trim mushrooms, set aside.

In a jar with a lid, put all ingredients but mushrooms and shake well. Pour marinade over mushrooms and cover. Refrigerate overnight. Drain and serve with toothpicks.

Fried Italian Ricotta Balls

2 1/2 cup self rising flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 lb ricotta cheese
1 tsp vanilla
6 eggs, slightly beaten

1 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
Mix these 2 ingredients together

Crisco or vegetable shortening, heat for frying.

Mix first 5 ingredients together thoroughly.

Drop 1 TBLS of dough into oil. Watch because balls go from golden brown to burned in seconds. Roll hot balls into cinnamon and sugar blend.

Serve warm.

Tomato and mozzarella bruschetta

3 plum tomatoes, finely chopped
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
2 TBLS capers
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 lb fresh mozzarella, finely chopped
2 TBLS balsamic vinegar
4 TBLS olive oil
salt and pepper to tast
Italian bread, sliced and lightly toasted

Preheat broiler. In a large bowl combine tomatoes, onions, basil, and mozzarella. Stir in balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Top toasted bread with mixture and place on a baking sheet. Broil until cheese melts.

Serve hot.

There you have it, our Italian recipes. All of them seem fairly easy to prepare. "Ingredients" has the italian seasoning, several types of balsamic vinegar and olive oil. And most of the tools are available.

If you are not already, I am inviting to become a fan of "ingredients" on facebook. The meeting I attended last night talked about using facebook as an advertising tool and I am going to give it a try.

Again, thank you to all who attended last night and a big thank you to Lana.



  1. It was a great time indeed Monica! I hope Mitchell saved you some of those Ricotta Balls. Wow! I've put some photos up on my blog at:

  2. He did not! And he ate four!! I may need to make them at home. Calla posted the pictures to facebook and I will have her post them to blog. Thank you for taking and sending the photos.