Class Recipes and More!

Tonight I had to privilege to teach an appetizer class to a fabulous group of people. You guys rock!  This was a fundraiser for a worthy cause, Project Learn which focuses on adult literacy classes. They have three used bookstores in our county, which I have shopped at frequently, and they are run by volunteers. I love shopping in the bookstores, it’s where I found a few of my cookbooks and homeschooling resources.

Let’s get on to the class details. Tonight I had 9 people who all love to cook and had no trouble jumping right in and making the appetizers. Due to an issue of not getting the recipes printed before the shop owner left, I promised to post the recipes here at my blog for the class participants. One thing I love about teaching these classes is that not only do I share information, I also learn new tips and information. I was informing the class of the fact the stuffed mushrooms we made were gluten-free but was corrected by a very smart participant. Apparently blue cheese is the only cheese with gluten! We used blue cheese but I am sure it can be substituted with Gorgonzola or feta with good results.

I was also asked a question about yogurt which I will address here. I love researching and a challenge. I was asked if the probiotic benefit in Greek yogurt is changed if you cook with it. The answer is “yes”, according the this article at . I learned a lot about probiotics in my research and now I am slightly disappointed since a big deal is made about eating or consuming probiotic yogurt and in pill form. Oh well, we can try to do the best we can in what we eat or drink, right?

On to the recipes!


Caprese skewers 


Fresh Mozzarella pearls or cube a ball of the same


Cherry tomatoes


Fresh Basil leaves


Olive oil


Picks (decorative)


Whole tomatoes and lettuce leaves






Assemble the tomato, basil leaf, cheese, basil leaf, tomato on the pick. Set the whole tomato on a lettuce leaf and stick the picks into the tomato. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper if you like.




Blue Cheese Stuffed Mushroom Caps




2 oz. Or ½ cup Blue cheese, cubed or crumbled


8 oz. Block of Cream cheese, cubed and softened


24 Mushrooms 


3 Tbsp Butter


Onion 1 medium, diced fine


Garlic 2 cloves crushed


1 Tsp dried parsley




Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove stems from caps,finely chop and set aside. In a skillet melt butter and add onion, garlic and mushroom stems. Saute’ 5 minutes or so until the onions are translucent. Reduce heat to low; add parsley, cream cheese, blue cheese, and lemon juice. Stir until cheeses are melted and well blended. Remove from heat.Season to taste with salt and pepper. Spoon cheese mixture into the mushroom caps, filling generously. Place stuffed mushroom caps on a baking sheet with sides.


Bake approximately 8 to 10 minutes until mushrooms are cooked and cheese is melted. Remove from heat and place mushrooms on a large serving plate or platter. Serve immediately.


Makes 24 stuffed mushrooms.


Artichoke and Chicken Salad tarts


3 cups cooked, diced chicken breast


2 cans of quartered artichokes in water, drained and chopped


2 Tbsp snipped fresh parsley


½ cup grated Parmesan cheese


2 cloves of garlic, crushed


Salt and pepper to taste


½ cup or more of mayonnaise


1 package wonton wrappers




Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all but wonton wrappers in a bowl using just enough mayonnaise to hold the salad together. Press wonton wrappers into cups of a mini-muffin pan with a spoon or tart shaper. Add the salad and bake for 10-12 minutes until the wontons are just getting brown and crispy. Cool and serve. Makes 24




Spicy hummus cups


8 oz. Prepared Hummus


1 Tbsp 5 spice mix such as a Moroccan spice mix


Tortilla chip cups


2-3 Tbsp parsley, snipped


½ cup plain yogurt, Greek preferred


1 plum tomato, seeded and diced


½ cup sliced black olives (Kalamata can be used, more salty flavor)


¼ of a seedless cucumber, diced fine




Mix spices with hummus. Fill into a ziplock bag and set aside. Mix 2 Tbsp of the parsley and the vegetables. Fill 24 of the tortilla chip cups with a small amount of hummus, spoon a little yogurt on the hummus, then top with mixed vegetables. Garnish with a bit of parsley. Serve.



Vanilla Mousse Dessert Cups

10 Chocolate covered waffle bowls

1 3.3 ounce package of instant pudding, vanilla flavored

8 ounce tub of Cool Whip, thawed

1 cup cold milk

dark chocolate, for garnish

tiramisu syrup for drizzling

Mix pudding and milk with a wire whisk until thickened. Gently fold in the thawed Cool Whip. Fill a Ziplock bag with the mousse. Pipe a generous amount into each cup. Using a cooking rasp or microplane grater, shave some dark chocolate over the top of each cup. Drizzle some tiramisu flavored syrup, like Torani brand, over the top. Serve.

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