Cooking Club Season Four!  Our second gathering of our “year” which runs the school calendar year.  We meet every other month, usually on a Thursday night, and Courtney is our gracious hostess.  I put my friend Catherine and I in the middle because we are team #noonions!!  We always know that our respective dishes will not have any onions. šŸ˜€

Is there anything better than a crisp glass of sauvignon blanc after a busy day?

Tina is one of our amazing cooks, she’s going to post these on her blog over the weekend and I will definitely share the shit out of this one.  It’s a squash, shiitake mushroom and goat cheese puff pastry turnover.  Swoon.  Check out her latest recipe that is going on my menu next week – a potato and sausage roast over arugula.  How delicious does that sound?!

Lindsay made a pizza stuffed mushroom.  Back when we first started we all brought recipes printed out for everyone to take home, but that’s slowly gone by the way side.  I found a very similar recipe, which is also going on my weekly menu next week – check it out here.

I am so happy I love mushrooms now – I didn’t even like mushrooms until five years ago, now I love them.  If you haven’t tried a vegetable you’ve sworn off since childhood – give it a try – you might be surprised!

Catherine made Ina Garten’s Tuscan roasted potatoes with lemon.  Holy balls.  First of all, I puffy heart potatoes, and second of all, the pop of lemon made this dish.  And, not surprisingly, this is also going on my Sunday dinner menu.  

Are we sensing a theme here?  This will also make my Taco Tuesday night menu!  Donna made this roasted cauliflower “burrito” bowl – roasted cauliflower, black beans, rice, corn and sliced limes with diced tomatoes.  Shhh…..I might add pan seared steak to my taco night with this šŸ˜€

You can see MaryBeth’s salad up in the first picture – I’ll have to add it down here later tonight.  She texted me and said “I am just making a salad.”  Just a salad?!  It was her take on her favorite salad from Trader Joe’s – it had baby mozzarella, mixed greens, pine nuts, cherry tomatoes with this amazing balsamic dressing – I’ll need to get that recipe from her – so good!

Julie was in charge of dessert, and made this gluten free shortcake with a layer of chocolate, topped with fresh strawberries and fresh whipped cream.  Swoon.  Um, in case you were wondering, this was insulin worthy.

My plate – a little bit of everything!  Well, maybe a lot of bit. šŸ˜€



Did I mention I was head chef?!  I decided to make an artichoke and spinach dip stuffed chicken breast.  But the chicken portions I got were smaller, and not thick enough to slice and stuff, so I improvised – thanks to an overwhelming response on my dilemma about how to cook these, I decided to just make chicken rolls and use toothpicks to secure while cooking.  It worked!

Sadly, I am going to post the recipe for this tonight – I left the recipe in my recipe book on the counter of my kitchen, and I want to make sure I get it right.  But the filling is 4 tablespoons fat free cream cheese, 2 tablespoons Alouette garlic and herb cheese spread and two cups of fresh spinach.

I spread a generous tablespoon of the filling in the chicken, and just rolled them up and secured with a toothpick.  I seasoned the outside of the chicken with salt, pepper and paprika.  These stayed rolled in my fridge for 24 hours before cooking.  Since it was cold outside, I packed these in a cooler with ice packs in my car when I was at work. Worked just fine!

I cooked this at Courtney’s house and it took exactly 14 minutes – 8 minutes on one side over medium heat, then flip and cook 6 minutes over low heat.  I cooked these in my cast iron skillet with grape seed oil.  When the chicken came out, I deglazed the pan with about 1/3 cup of pinot grigio, and then added half a cup of my homemade chicken gravy – just 2 tablespoons of butter, two tablespoons of flour – cook that over medium heat, stirring constantly, then slowly add two cups of chicken broth.  Once cooled, you can store it in your fridge.  I think I may do a whole recipe post tomorrow on this – so stay tuned!  I did think it was a bit bland, but everyone loved it.  I may add some crushed red pepper to the pan sauce when I post this tomorrow.

Oh, and I also sprinkled with a bit of shredded Parmesan cheese over the top.  Yum!

It’s not what’s on the table that matters most, it’s who’s in the chairs.  šŸ˜€

Catherine always buys Courtney the new Ina Garten cookbook, and flags recipes that she thinks Courtney will like, or what dishes she wants to make together with her – I love this idea.  

Thank you ladies for another wonderful evening of friendship and food.  I am blessed!